Carolyn Rosenstein, a retired McDonogh School reading specialist recalled as a nurturing faculty mentor who also served on the Women's Board of the Johns Hopkins Hospital, died of cancer Oct. 27 at her Pikesville home. She was 75.
"She was a great gal, very irreverent. She called it just as she saw it," said Barbara Dover, a fellow member of the Hopkins' Women's Board. "She did it with a smile and a chuckle."
Born Carolyn Stein in Jersey City, N.J., and raised in Teaneck, N.J., she was a Teaneck High School graduate. She earned a degree in education at Boston University, where she met her future husband, Dr. Beryl Rosenstein, a Johns Hopkins School of Medicine professor of pediatrics and former vice president of medical affairs. She later received a master's degree from the Johns Hopkins University.
She and her husband moved to Baltimore in 1961. From 1977 to 1997, she was on the McDonogh School faculty and headed its middle school reading program. She also taught study skills and prepared students for an annual oratory contest.
"She cared about every single kid and monitored the new teachers. She had a way of taking people under her wing," said Kennedy Waller, a Westminster resident who heads the McDonogh Middle School math program.
Nancy McFadden, a fifth-grade McDonogh English teacher, recalled Mrs. Rosenstein as an excellent, respected educator.
"She was full of wisdom beyond words," said Ms. McFadden, who lives in Reisterstown. "She was one of the grandest ladies I have ever known. She had grace and intelligence. She was always looking after everyone but she would do it from behind a curtain. She did this so that others could have the success or the achievement. Because of her own strengths, she became a backbone for so many people she was breaking in."
Ms. McFadden said that Mrs. Rosenstein offered encouragement and often said, "Don't look back, baby."
She said that her colleague did not show anger.
"She would just be perturbed in her way. She was articulate and had high standards but she was aware of the children and what they needed personally," she said.
Diane Young, a McDonogh English teacher, recalled advice that Mrs. Rosenstein gave her: "You had better teach it by May 1 because after that, the kids have checked out."
She recalled her mentor as a flamboyant, expressive and colorful personality. "She was a colossal hostess and always kept in lasting touch with her friends," she said.
She was a devotee of New York theater and favored musicals. She was also a Baltimore Symphony Orchestra subscriber. She visited contemporary art galleries and was a member of the Museum of Modern Art. Her husband said she enjoyed travel and had been to 52 countries and every continent except Antarctica.
She was a competitive tennis player and competed in doubles at the Homeland Tennis Club. She also enjoyed golf.
"She liked to play tennis on a grass court," said Ms. Young. "She was a ferocious competitor and was wicked at the net. She liked to win."
As part of her work with the Hopkins Hospital Women's Board, she greeted donors who brought clothing contributions to the annual best dressed sale.
"She knew so many people," said Mrs. Dover, her fellow board member. "And when she ran our education and program committee, she also knew so many people at Hopkins she could call upon to speak."
Mona Miller, a Hunt Valley resident who also served with Mrs. Rosenstein on the Hopkins board, recalled her as a gracious woman who was attentive to details.
"At events she was overseeing, everything was lined up," Mrs. Miller said.
Mrs. Rosenstein was a member of the Beth El Congregation.
Services will be held at 1 p.m. Thursday at Sol Levinson & Bros., 8900 Reisterstown Road, Pikesville.
In addition to her husband of 54 years, survivors include a son, Jonathan Rosenstein of Rye, N.Y.; a daughter, Susan Slabotsky of Bloomfield Hills, Mich.; and seven grandchildren.Copyright © 2015, The Baltimore Sun