SAPERSTEIN, Rose Balline, M.D. died peacefully at age 95 on September 1, 2013 in Los Angeles, her home for 65 years, after a long, healthy and productive life. She was born Rose Balline in July, 1918 in Chicago, Illinois, and raised by a single mother who, despite hardships, encouraged her only child to pursue her dreams. "Dr. Rose," as she was to be called for most of her adult life, certainly dreamed big. She became a Girl Scout and discovered many of her talents and capabilities. She felt that it was her true introduction into American Life, and she excelled, becoming the Eagle Scout of the year in 1932. She worked at Sears Roebuck selling cigars to fund her undergraduate education, and was admitted to University of Illinois School of Medicine in 1939. After receiving her MD in 1943 she bravely left Chicago for the first time in her life, and became an intern at LA County Hospital. It was here that she met the love of her life, Jerome Saperstein, M.D. and they married after three months of courtship in 1944. They had an enduring 62 year romance that lasted until her beloved died in 2006.
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Dr. Rose went to NYC to study dermatology, and returned to Los Angeles to become one of the first women dermatologists in the city. She was beloved by her patients, and treated generations of families over her 50 years of dedicated work. She was a tireless advocate for professional women, and encouraged and supported many young people to actualize their dreams as she had her own. She was President of both the Metropolitan Dermatology Society (1962) and the LA County Medical Women's Society (1975-1980). She also developed Brasivol, an acne soap which was the template underlying all of the current day "scrub treatments" for acne. Dr. Rose was on the staff of USC and UCLA medical schools, and devoted countless hours teaching medical students, interns, and residents as well as treating people who could not otherwise afford care. She was generous with her knowledge, time and caring. Dr. Rose is survived by her two children, Judith Saperstein Braun, M.D. (Paul Engle Braun M.D.), Harry Weingast Saperstein, M.D. (Joan Weingast Saperstein, M.D.) and four grandchildren, Joseph Braun, Deborah Braun, Jacob Saperstein (Rachel), and Ruth Saperstein Samson (Ian). She lived her life guided by the Jewish values of her childhood, hosted all the Jewish holidays in their home, and went on to get a Bat Mitzvah at age 75! She was a beloved mother and grandmother who encouraged her family to "reach for the stars" and never compromise on what was right and just. Dr. Rose set a very high standard of effort, achievement, and love in her lifelong effort to make the world a better place. She will be dearly missed. Memorial contributions to be made in lieu of flowers may be made to AAD Camp Discovery, a camp for children with chronic skin conditions. Contact info: http://aadevelopment.org (847-240-1409). Mount Sinai Memorial Parks and Mortuaries - Hollywood Hills (800) 600-0076
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Sept. 5, 2013