Jennie Mendelson (nee Rosenberg) died on June 28 at the age of 94.
Mendelson grew up in New Jersey, attended Newark College of Engineering and moved to Hyde Park in Chicago with her late husband Saul Mendelson in the late 1940’s. Later they moved to South Shore.
Mendelson was active in politics and a generous advocate of progressive causes. She was a founding member of Women Strike For Peace and along with her husband Saul, led efforts to desegregate Chicago’s Rainbow Beach. Mendelson was a member of Independent Voters of Illinois for 40 years, of which her husband was at one time State Chair and then South Side Chair. The Mendelsons were helpful in introducing Barack Obama to progressive Hyde Park–South Shore politics and getting him the critical IVI endorsement when Obama first ran for office in the 13th State Senatorial District in 1996. Mendelson worked at the University of Chicago for 25 years, where she supervised the Admissions Office of the Graduate Humanities Division and was very proud to show her U. of C. gold watch.
Mendelson is survived by sons Jack (Carole), Neal and Paul and granddaughter Emma Mendelson. A memorial service is planned. Memorials in her name may be sent to The Greater Chicago Food Depository, 4100 W. Ann Lurie Place, Chicago, Illinois 60632.