Rosalynn Carter

Former First Lady of the United States, Co-founder of The Carter Center

First Lady of Mental Health


First Lady of
Mental Health

Widely recognized as the nation's foremost advocate for mental health, former First Lady Rosalynn Carter was actively devoted to building a more caring society. Learn more about her lifetime of service that has made a difference in the lives of so many.

"Do what you can to show you care about other people, and you will make our world a better place."

-Rosalynn Carter

A Life of Service

A working partner of the 39th president of the United States, former First Lady Rosalynn Carter broke new ground as first lady by fostering programs and services for people with mental illnesses, senior citizens, women, and disenfranchised groups. She continued her leadership through The Carter Center in Atlanta and was actively devoted to building a more caring society.

As emissaries for the Center, Rosalynn and Jimmy Carter circled the globe many times on nonpolitical campaigns to eradicate Guinea worm disease and other neglected tropical diseases, increase agricultural production in Africa, monitor elections in nascent democracies, urge greater compliance with international human rights standards, and resolve conflicts. 

Mrs. Carter established the Carter Center’s Mental Health Program to continue her work to combat stigma and discrimination against people with mental illnesses and promote improved mental health care in the United States and abroad. She also chaired the Center's Mental Health Task Force, a group of individuals in a position to affect public policy; hosted an annual forum of national mental health leaders to foster greater consensus on pivotal national policy issues; and established the Rosalynn Carter Fellowships for Mental Health Journalism to encourage accurate, in-depth reporting about mental health issues.

Read stories below to meet people around the world whose lives have been forever changed by the work of Rosalynn Carter.