Careen Rizzo Mayer was born Careen Marie Rizzo on April 28, 1939, in Summit, New Jersey, to parents Henrique Luis Rizzo and Edythe Marie Rizzo. She grew up in New Jersey, Florida, and Brazil. After high school, she attended the University of Maryland, completing a Bachelor's degree in Psychology there in 1975, and in 1992 earned a Master's degree in Mediation and Conflict Resolution from Antioch College, Ohio. Careen worked at the nonprofit Quaker organization, the American Friends Service Committee (Baltimore) from 1982-1990, before spending 15 years at Baltimore's Shepherd Pratt Hospital in a position that focused on community outreach programs - media literacy, violence prevention for youth, and managing 50 professional mediators serving the Baltimore city courts and local families. She retired from Shepherd Pratt in 2005, but continued her teaching at Goucher College and the College of Notre Dame, a role she began in 1992 and carried on until two months before her passing. Careen was married until 1989. She raised three children, Dana, Eric, and Andrea, and lovingly cared for four grandchildren. Active in her Quaker meeting, she was a friend to all, and an ally to those in need. Complications from breast cancer, originally diagnosed in 2009, led to her passing on February 27, 2017 at her longtime home in Annapolis.
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