Dr. Natalie Stephens (Turner), the founder of Rape Victim Advocates (RVA) died of natural causes Jan. 13 in Fort Myers, Fla. She was 91.
Prior to retiring to Florida, Stephens lived in Chicago for 50 years. She was dedicated to providing to caring for to rape victims, culminating in the founding of a nonprofit that continues to support and protect victims 38 years later.
RVA responds to 11 hospitals across metropolitan Chicago and reaches more than 1,200 survivors of sexual violence each year through comprehensive services as well as more than 10,000 children, youth and adults through prevention education work. Stephens continued her commitment to RVA throughout the years, serving as honorary chair for the organization's 30th-anniversary gala.
Stephens was preceded in death by her husband of 50 years, Lawrence L. Turner, in 1998. She is survived by her sister, Janet Hutton; her son, Stephen Turner; her daughter, Martha Turner; and four grandchildren.
A memorial service will be held March 17 at the Sanibel Congregational United Church of Christ, 2050 Periwinkle Way, Sanibel, Fla. A tribute to Stephens will also take place in June at RVA's Visionary Awards Gala.