Born in Chicago, Ill., Mrs. Lerman grew up in Milwaukee, Wisc., and celebrated her Bat Mitzvah in 1953. During college, she spent one summer in the South registering blacks to vote. After graduating from the University of Wisconsin with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in social services, she moved to New York City and worked for the Welfare Department. She visited Israel for two months in the early 1960s, traveled solo for a year around the world in the 1970s and 20 years later explored Africa. In 1972, Mrs. Lerman moved to Tucson and began a 30-year career as a social worker. From 2004 to 2006, she was a volunteer case worker for JFCS’s African Refugee Resettlement Program. At the age of 60 she celebrated her Simchat Chochma, becoming an elder in the Jewish community.
Survivors include her mother, Bernadine of Tucson; children, Noah and Sara Lerman-Simmes, both of Tucson; sisters, Sharon Chaimson of Tucson and Sheina of Newfoundland, Canada.
Graveside services were held in the Congregation Ner Tamid section of Evergreen Cemetery with Carol Kestler officiating.
Memorial contributions may be made to the Community Food Bank, Habitat for Humanity, Humane Society of Southern Arizona or Tucson Center for Women & Children.