Woehrlin remembered for efforts at capitol
The Arc Minnesota has lost one of its heroes. Mary “Molly” Woehrlin died December 23. She was 84 and lived in Northfield. Woehrlin grew up on the shores of Lake Minnetonka, and attended Northrop School in Minneapolis and Smith College. She married William Woehrlin in 1953.
She came from a loving and supportive family where the children received a privileged start in life and were encouraged to make their own choices to define themselves and develop value systems upon which to build their lives. She had a deep empathy for those who felt excluded from society.
Woehrlin spent her adult live as an activist, with her focus including mental illness and developmental disabilities. She, Jane Donnelly Birks and the late Sally Swallen Helmerich received the heroes honor in 2012, for their many years of advocacy at the state capitol. They worked to close state institutions, sometime taking the wives of state legislators to see the facilities’ conditions firsthand. They worked on community inclusion and the quest for funding for services. The three were active when there were few women lobbyists.
Woehrlin also served on the Rice County Board of Commissioners.
She is survived by her husband Bill, two daughters and two sons, and many other relatives and friends. Services will be held at 10 a.m. Saturday, January 21 at the Northfield UCC. Memorial donations are suggested to TORCH,
Community Action Center, WINGS or the church.