Jennifer Knauss

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1937 - 2012
Jennifer Knauss, 75, healthcare advocate

Jennifer Knauss, who retired as the executive director of the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health in Chicago and was most recently the president of Alzheimer's Spoken Here, a Chicago advocacy organization, died of Alzheimer's Disease on Monday at Catonsville Commons Nursing Home in Catonsville, Maryland. She was 75 years old and lived in Chicago for much of her life before she became ill.

Ms. Knauss, who was known as Jenny, was a teacher and advocate, working at the University of Illinois Medical School and for several public health organizations throughout her career. Her area of expertise was women's health and reproductive rights. She was a founding member of the Chicago Women's Liberation Organization. She later became the first executive director of the Illinois Caucus for Adolescent Health, a nonprofit with an emphasis on marginalized populations and training young people to advocate for themselves and their communities.

When Ms. Knauss learned she had Alzheimer's in 2002, she decided to use her remaining productive years as an advocate for Alzheimer's patients, testifying before Congress to garner research dollars for the disease and working with University of Illinois gerontology researchers.

Ms. Knauss was born in Melbourne, England, a small village near Cambridge. She received her undergraduate and master's degrees in history from Oxford. She moved to Africa in 1960, where she first worked at the University of Ibadan in Nigeria and later began teaching at the University of Ghana in Accra. In Ghana she met and married her first husband, an American, the late Peter R. Knauss, and moved with him to the United States.

Ms. Knauss is survived by her second husband, Don F. Moyer of Chicago; a son and daughter from her first marriage, Orlando Knauss, of Larchmont, New York, and Olivia Bukosky of Owings Mills, Maryland; and three grandchildren, Jacob Bukosky, and Theodore and Louisa Knauss. Her children will hold a memorial service in Chicago later this summer. Donations can be made in Ms. Knauss's name to Planned Parenthood.
Published on from June 13 to June 14, 2012
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