Rosalind Inslicht Edelstein, who pioneered family psychotherapy in Atlanta and mentored generations of young social workers, died Jan. 6, 2019, at the age of 97.
Mrs. Edelstein was born in Brooklyn, N.Y., of immigrant parents from Poland. She attended the Yeshiva of Flatbush and became the first person in her family to graduate from college. After Brooklyn College, she went on to earn a master’s in social work at the University of Pennsylvania.
In 1948, she moved to Dalton, Ga., with her husband, Otto, a textile engineer. She often spoke of her shock at segregation in the Deep South. With few social services then in Dalton, she commuted to Atlanta to work at the social service agency that has since evolved into Families First in Atlanta.
A daughter, Karen, and a son, Ken, were born in Dalton. The family moved to Caracas and then to Toronto, where Mrs. Edelstein counseled Holocaust survivors, before returning to Dalton. There, she became the founding director of the Parent Child Center, a landmark federally funded program that modeled comprehensive services for poor families with young children.
After the family moved to Atlanta in 1972, she directed counseling services for Families First, then known as the Child Service and Family Counseling Center. As director of staff development, she also trained many young social workers and family therapists. After retiring from that position, she counseled couples and individuals in private practice until 2017, when she was 96 years old.
Survivors include her daughter, Karen Edelstein; son, Ken Edelstein; and grandson Obediah Medrano Edelstein. Mrs. Edelstein was a strong supporter of Israel and of many progressive causes, including women’s rights, the environment and Middle East peace. In lieu of flowers, memorial donations may be made to Givat Haviva and TechnoServe. A graveside service was held Jan. 11, 2019, at Crest Lawn Memorial Park with Rabbi Loren Lapidus officiating. Arrangements by Dressler’s Jewish Funeral Care, Atlanta, 770-451-4999.