Roberta Funk Dorsch was born on July 9, 1943, in Baltimore to Roberta Harris Funk and Edward J. Funk, Jr. She had one sibling, Edward W. Funk. She attended Towson High School and the University of Maryland.
Roberta graduated from the Johns Hopkins Hospital School of Cytology and worked as a Registered Cytotechnologist, later heading the Cytology Labs at the Veteran’s Administration Hospital in Baltimore and the Sacred Heart Hospital in Cumberland, Maryland. She married Dennis Dorsch, the hospital comptroller at Johns Hopkins and then Kent & Queen Anne’s in Chestertown. It was there that their daughter Brenda was born. When Dennis transitioned to being clergy, they served first in Baltimore City, and then in Alleghany County.
While living in Allegany County, Roberta became the leader of a Girl Scout Troop, and then of a Cadette/Senior Troop. She began her Girl Scout career over 60 years ago as a Brownie in a Troop in Baltimore, Maryland. As a Girl Scout she earned the Curved Bar, then the highest award for girls, and later earned the First Class award which had then become the highest award for girls. As a leader, Roberta then became a Service Unit Director for the Shawnee Girl Scout Council and then was employed by the Council as the Director of Training and Recruitment. Roberta began working as the Volunteer Coordinator for Rocky Gap State Park, and then became the state-wide Director of Volunteer Service for all of the Maryland State Parks. She continued in that position until her retirement.
Roberta served in many volunteer capacities throughout her life, from teaching children in her Church to teaching swimming to children at the Cash Valley Elementary School. She served in the PTAs of Cash Valley and the Mt. Savage Middle and High School. In the 1980’s she was chairperson of the “Just Say No” anti-drug abuse campaign in Allegany County, Maryland, and led the development of the DARE program in the schools in cooperation with the Allegany County Police. Even while employed by the Girl Scout Council and the Maryland State Parks, she also was an active volunteer for each group. Roberta was secretary for the Charles County Historical Trust. She served as a docent for the General Smallwood House in Southern Maryland, and served with the Benjamin Banneker Museum in Catonsville, Maryland. Roberta has worked with her husband in establishing programs for and serving the homeless for a great many years. They also regularly participated in Operation Welcome Home Maryland, greeting military personnel returning from overseas at BWI Marshall Airport.
As a volunteer Reserve Officer of the Maryland Department of Natural Resources Police, Roberta put in many hours in those duties. She served on the History Committee for the DNR. She taught the Water Wise Program and the Project Wild nature programs to children of all ages, especially Girl Scout and Boy Scout groups. For many years she volunteered at the State Welcome Center located on Interstate 95 N, just south of Baltimore City. She was the secretary of the Inglewood Community Association and participated in the Wilkens-Caton Police Community Association.
Over the years, Roberta has received many awards and recognitions for her efforts, including being chosen as Allegany County Person of the Year in 1988. She has received two Superintendent’s Awards for her service to the Maryland State Parks, and several Governor’s Awards for her outstanding service.
Roberta was a Life Girl Scout and served on the Archives Committee and the Anniversary Committee of the Girl Scouts of Central Maryland. Her daughter Brenda is a Life Girl Scout who has earned the Gold Award. Her husband Dennis is a Life Girl Scout who was awarded the Thanks Badge. Roberta continues her lifetime involvement and support of the Girl Scouts, and her book, Girl Scouts of Central Maryland, was written as a tribute to 100 years of Girl Scouting in America and in Central Maryland.
Since moving to Charlestown Retirement Community, Roberta enjoyed the many advantages of being in an excellent supportive community and meeting many new friends. She became active in a number of groups and enjoyed many of the interesting lectures. She became President of the Girl Scouts Forever group, and enjoyed planning many activities, including a major Council-wide event held at Charlestown. Roberta arranged for Girl Scout cookie sales at Charlestown, and held programs at Renaissance Gardens.
Roberta served as Secretary for the Resident Life Committee of the Resident Council, and assisted with the Archives Committee each week. She greatly enjoyed working with the Field of Flags each Memorial Day, and providing flags to all of the family and friends who served in the military.
Roberta spent her life serving God and others. She was greatly loved, and will be greatly missed
Charitable donations may be made to:
Earl’s Place Homeless Ministry
1400 E. Lombard Street, Baltimore MD 21231