Violet Franks, PhD, z”l


Violet Franks, PhD of Bloomington, IN, passed away peacefully on Sunday, 1 November with her beloved son at her side. She is survived by her children Steven (Karen) Franks of Bloomington and Sharrin Vernall of Auckland, New Zealand; by her five grandchildren Julia (Joshua) Needle of Henderson, NV, David Franks of Chicago, Elisabeth (Brian) Anderson of Denver, Emily Sage and Brendon Vernall of Auckland; and by one great-grandson Nathan Needle. 

Violet was born in Queens, NY on 20 July 1926to Jewish Russian immigrants Sarah (née Chomsky) and Joseph Greenberg. Always an avid student, Violet pursued a career in psychology after graduating from Queens College. As a master’s student in 1952 at the University of Minnesota, she met a visiting graduate student from Wales, Cyril Franks at a HIllel Shabbat dinner. After brief courtship and wedding in New York, the newlywedsleft for London to continue their education.

On the cusp of the women’s movement, Violetedited Women in Therapy: New Psychotherapies for a Changing Society. Both Violet and Cyril were active in the American Psychological Association; theirapproach was behavioral and cognitive. She taught at Douglas College and served as the Director of Testing for Carrier Clinic. Violet always made friends easily wherever she went. After suffering a stroke in 2013, Violet and her husband moved to Bloomington to becloser to family. She loved taking advantage of the cultural offerings of her new home, such as going to the opera, theater, and IU women’s basketball games.

Violet’s spirit and her memory lives on in her friends and family scattered around the world. She was a profoundly compassionate soul and a model of lovingkindness. Friends and colleagues recall Violet as a seminal scholar, a wise mentor, and a merry and loyal friend.

A graveside service was held at Valhalla Memory Gardens on Tuesday, November 3.

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