Blog | Thank You, Mrs. Carter, for Sharing Your Story

Eve Byrd headshot

Eve Byrd is director of the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program.

It is human nature to want to be understood and accepted, so when people like Rosalynn Carter and her family share their experiences with dementia, they provide a comforting connection to the more than 55 million people worldwide who have dementia diagnoses. Mrs. Carter is a lifelong, globally acclaimed champion for those with brain illnesses and their caregivers. She continues to inspire and connect with us now by telling her story.

“Rosalynn Carter continues to inspire and be a champion for the care of all people with brain illnesses and their caregivers by sharing her and her family’s personal story.”

—Eve H. Byrd, DNP, MPH, Director, Carter Center Mental Health Program

As a nurse practitioner and psychiatric/mental health clinical nurse specialist, I have had the privilege of working with and caring for people with psychiatric illnesses and dementia during the most vulnerable times of their lives. As I write this, I am traveling with my family, celebrating my father’s 90th birthday. Together, as a family, we are navigating the many challenges of aging and changing health. I marvel at the wisdom of people in this age and stage of life.

  • Rosalynn Carter with mic in hand.

    Rosalynn Carter speaks at the 24th annual Rosalynn Carter Georgia Mental Health Forum at the Center in Atlanta in May 2019. (Photo: The Carter Center)

And I remain in awe of, and inspired by, the wisdom and life work of Mrs. Carter, who has always said that by telling accurate stories of individuals’ and families’ challenges, we decrease stigma and the resulting discriminatory behavior of other people. She used her position to tell the world that with the right care and support, everyone can realize their life’s desires and contribute to the common good — that by giving a voice to people with brain illnesses and by fighting for equitable health care coverage, we can all live a life of recovery.

Mrs. Carter, thank you for sharing your story — you honor us with your transparency and inspire us with your life’s work! What a blessing you are in all of our lives.

At The Carter Center, we follow our founders’ lead: We wage peace; we fight disease; and, by sharing stories that provide our global sisters and brothers a sense of connectedness, comfort, and well-being, we build hope.

Related Resources

Carter Family Statement about Health of First Lady Rosalynn Carter

Honoring 50 Plus Years of Mental Health Leadership

People Magazine | Rosalynn Carter’s Tireless Advocacy on Topics of Mental Health and Caregiving Comes Full Circle

GPB | Rosalynn Carter Has Worked Decades to Reduce the Stigma of Mental Illness. Here's a Timeline.

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