Rosalynn Carter, a former First Lady of the United States, has dedicated her life to advocating for mental health and building a more caring society. As the working partner of the 39th president, she broke new ground as First Lady by promoting programs and services for people with mental illnesses, senior citizens, women, and disenfranchised groups.
After leaving the White House, Carter established The Carter Center in Atlanta, where she continued her work as an advocate for mental health and human rights. As emissaries for the Center, she traveled around the world on non-political campaigns to eradicate Guinea worm disease and other neglected tropical diseases, increase agricultural production in Africa, monitor elections in nascent democracies, urge greater compliance with international human rights standards, and resolve conflicts.
One of Carter’s most notable achievements is her Mental Health Program at The Carter Center. Through this program, she has worked to combat stigma and discrimination against people with mental illnesses and promote improved mental health care in both the United States and abroad. She has also chaired the Center’s Mental Health Task Force and established an annual forum of national mental health leaders. Additionally, Carter has encouraged accurate reporting about mental health issues through her Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism.
Overall, Rosalynn Carter’s lifetime of service has left a lasting impact on countless individuals and communities around the world. Her work has forever changed the way mental health is viewed and treated, inspiring others to follow in her footsteps as advocates for positive change.