Friday, May 7, 2010

From Charlotte Bunch, Roxanna Carrillo, and Anita Nayar

Dear global friends of Rhonda,

We write with sad news that our beloved Rhonda left us last night (May 6) at 5:50 pm EST. She died peacefully in her apartment in Manhattan overlooking the river, with friends around her as she had wanted. Many more of her friends in New York gathered in her apartment afterwards to tell her good bye and how much we loved her. We were able to be with her for several hours together before the funeral home took her body away covered in flowers. She has chosen to be cremated which will happen on Sunday. Friends will be sitting shiva for her on Sunday afternoon in her Brooklyn home and after the funeral in her Manhattan apartment later in May.

Her funeral will be simple and held at Riverside Chapel in Manhattan probably on the 21st of May at 11am. There will also be a larger memorial service for her where hopefully friends from many parts of the world can gather to remember all that she brought to our lives both politically and personally. We are tentatively hoping to do this on September 19th - just a few days after her birthday (Sept 15) and immediately prior to the MDG Summit in New York. We will let you know about concrete plans for this as we have more details.

For those who would like to contribute in her memory, she has asked that people make a donation to the Rhonda Copelon Fund for Gender Justice at the Center for Constitutional Rights in New York, where she worked for many years before going to CUNY Law|School. The Fund will help to ensure and deepen CCR's work on gender litigation and advocacy. You can go on line to donate and designate it to the Copelon Fund ( or you can contact Kevi Brannelly at for more information. You can also of course donate to a cause of your choosing any where in the world in her name.

We know that you all join us in mourning, remembering, and honoring Rhonda.

Love, Charlotte Bunch, Roxanna Carrillo, and Anita Nayar