July 19, 1930 - Oct. 9, 2016 July 19, 1930 – October 9, 2016 JUNE MIZELL CUNNIFF June was born and lived in Birmingham her entire life. She established J. Cunniff and Associates in 1974, the first woman-owned public relations agency in the state of Alabama. She was a regional affiliate of both Hill & Knowlton and Burson-Marsteller, two prestigious national public relations firms. In her 35-year career, her agency represented multiple Fortune 500 companies. June worked with many organizations and served on numerous boards. She spent many years as an active board member of the Birmingham Ballet, was a founder of The Red Mountain School, and created the Foundation For Women's Health in Alabama. Among her charitable contributions were the Pop Out Fair for Indian Springs School, and the Art for Cooper Green Project where over 800 pieces of framed art were donated to the hospital. With generous contributions from her friend, Mignon Comer Smith, June was instrumental in establishing two worthy endowments: The J. Craig and Page T. Smith Scholarship Foundation ("First in Families") and the School of Business at the University of Alabama. June was a seeker who found enlightenment through her studies of philosophy, science, nature, education, medicine, geopolitics, literature, and art. Her search for meaning was inspired by her lifelong friend and mentor, Dr. Louis E. "Doc" Armstrong, the first director of Indian Springs School. She credited her inner calm, worldview, and need to work for the common good to her lifelong association with the Red Mountain Study Group, which avidly studies the works and philosophies of G. I. Gurdjieff. Two of her favorite aphorisms were "Judge others according to yourself and you will seldom be mistaken," and "Judge no one according to the tales of others." For nearly half a century, June worked on herself and worked for others, through a devotion to a rare quality of existence that she perceived and needed to share. June transitioned peacefully after a brief illness. She approached death with the same dignity and acceptance with which she lived her life. In accordance with her desire to help others, she became an anatomical donor to UAB Medical School. She was predeceased by her husband, John Raymond Cunniff, Jr., and is survived by her two children, John Hilford Cunniff (Carol Adams), Judith Cunniff Olsen, three grandchildren, John Thomas Olsen (Carissa Ramirez-Olsen), Jackson McNaron Cunniff Olsen, and Elizabeth Adams Cunniff, and two great-grandsons, Thomas Meztli Olsen and Desmond Jesus Olsen. A celebration of her life will be held on Sunday, November 20, 2016 from 1-3 PM at the Clubhouse on Highland, 2908 Highland Avenue South in Birmingham.The family suggests that remembrances in her name be made to The Red Mountain Study Group, 1014 24th Street South, Birmingham, AL 35205.
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