Obituary: M. Susan Carlson

St. Louis Jewish Light [St. Louis MO]

January 3, 2022

M. Susan Carlson passed away on December 30, 2021, at the age of 72. Beloved wife of Gerry Greiman for 39 years; dear mother of David Carlson Greiman and Nora Carlson Greiman (James Lange); dear sister of the late Jeff Carlson, the late Greg (Diane) Carlson and Steve (Tina) Carlson; our dear aunt, great aunt, sister-in-law; cousin and friend to many.

Susan was born in Lincoln, Nebraska on November 2, 1949, and grew up on the family farm outside Waverly, Nebraska. She graduated from Cottey College (which later conferred its Distinguished Alumni Award on her) and the University of Nebraska, taught high school for a year, and then earned her law degree from the University of Nebraska School of Law. Following Law School, Susan served as a Law Clerk for the United States Court of Appeals for the Eighth Circuit in St. Louis, where she met Gerry.

After her Clerkship, Susan moved to Washington, D.C., where she spent two years as a litigator for a private law firm and six years as a Trial Attorney with the United States Department of Justice, including a six-month stint in Guam. Susan, along with Gerry, David and Nora, returned to St. Louis in 1986, and Susan worked as a full-time Assistant and Associate Visiting Professor at the Washington University School of Law from 1987 to 1994, teaching litigation and alternative dispute resolution in the clinical law program. During her time at Washington University, Susan also spent several weeks as a Lecturer at Sichuan University School of Law in China. While at Washington University, Susan served as a mentor and role model to many women law students; the Law School had only a handful of women faculty members at the time.

Susan later was a founding member of Van Amburg, Chackes, Carlson & Spritzer, and spent many years practicing law in St. Louis, representing clients in various types of civil litigation, including civil rights, clergy abuse matters and discrimination cases. In 2010, Susan had the honor of being elected to the Missouri House of Representatives, where she served from 2011 to 2013.

M. Susan Carlson
M. Susan Carlson

Susan also was active in community activities, serving as a Trustee of the St. Louis Metropolitan Sewer District; President of the Missouri Women’s Political Caucus; President and Board member of the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri; President and Board Member of Missouri NARAL; Democratic Committeewoman for Hadley Township; National Board Member of the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri; and Board Member of the University City Educational Fund. Susan was a long-time member of Central Reform Congregation.

Susan loved her family, travel, reading, lawyering, politics, the beach and watching golf. She uniquely combined smarts, spunk and compassion. Her constant advice to her children was Be Smart, Have Fun. Susan made a difference in the world and will be missed.

Funeral service Monday January 3rd 1:00 PM at Central Reform Congregation, 5020 Waterman at Kingshighway. No visitation prior to service. Interment New Mt. Sinai Cemetery. MASK AND VACCINATION CARDS REQUIRED.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that those wishing to make a tribute in Susan’s honor consider a gift to the American Civil Liberties Union of Missouri or an organization of their choice.

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