Rose Enevoldsen Berler, 95, a long-time resident and civic leader in Alexandria, died 19 May 2021 in Lewes, Delaware, after a stroke. Rose was an avid gardener, whose yard won numerous neighborhood awards.
A nurse by training and graduate of Sinai Hospital School of Nursing in Baltimore, she served as a member of the Visiting Nurses Association of Northern Virginia. Rose served on the Board of Directors of Alexandria Hospital Corporation, later Alexandria Health Services Corporation, from 1978 to 1997, including serving a term as its chair, the first woman and nurse to do so. She served on the Alexandria Youth Services Commission and the Advisory Committee for Adolescent Health Clinics. From 2000 to 2014, she served as chair of the Alexandria Schools Health Advisory Board, and was recognized by the School Board in 2013 for her years of service.
She was a long-time member of the League of Women Voters of Alexandria, serving as president for two terms from 1970 – 1973 and again from 1977-78. She also was chair of the Alexandria United Way and a member of their Campaign Cabinet in the late 1970s. In 1978, she became the first woman appointed to the Alexandria Redevelopment and Housing Authority, serving for nine years. In this role, she worked to ensure safe living conditions for women and children in public housing. She was also the commissioner and first woman appointed to the Virginia Housing Development Authority, serving between 1980 and 1984, as well as a member of the National Association of Housing and Redevelopment Officials.
Rose earned the George Washington Citizenship Award from the Alexandria Chamber of Commerce. She was also the recipient of the Marguerite Payez Leadership Award from the Alexandria Commission on the Status of Women. In 2014, she was named a Living Legend of Alexandria.
Rose Enevoldsen Berler was born on 7 January in Norfolk, Virginia. Her husband, Seymour Berler, died in 1991. She is survived by three children, Anne of Myrtle Beach, SC, Joan of Alexandria, VA, and Daniel of Washington, D.C., a sister, Edith Offenhartz of Canton, CT, and numerous nieces and nephews. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations be made to the League of Women Voters. https://www.lwv.org/
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