Dallas civic leader Ruth Altshuler dies at 93

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Beloved Dallas Philanthropist Ruth Altshuler died Friday night due complications from breaking her hip in October.

Altshuler is remembered for the millions of dollars she helped raise for organizations like the Salvation Army, Laura Bush’s Foundation for American Libraries and the Dallas Children’s Advocacy Center. She also hosted annual thanksgiving food drives in her front yard.

"Ruth Altshuler was our North Star." said Jennifer Sampson, CEO of United Way. "She was the first lady of everything at United Way of Metropolitan Dallas. She was the first female to chair our annual fundraising campaign, she was the first female to chair our board. She is the founder of the United Way Tocqueville Society."

In the 1990's she helped then Dallas Police Lt. Bill Walsh with his idea to help abused children. "Without her it would've never happened, there's no doubt about it," said Walsh, who co-founded the Children's Advocacy Center. "She gave us direction. (She said) 'Here's what you need to do. First thing you need to do is get a board together, I want you to see this gentleman, I'm going to arrange a meeting.'"

With Altshuler's help the Dallas Children's Advocacy Center now helps 5,200 families a year. I will celebrate its 27th anniversary in January.

President George W. Bush and former First Lady Laura Bush released a statement saying “We are Heartbroken by the loss of our dear friend, Ruth Altshuler. Dallas has lost an outstanding civic leader in Ruth.

She was 93-years-old.

A memorial service is planned for Thursday at 2pm at Highland Park United Methodist Church. It will be followed by a reception at SMU, where Altshuler was an alum and where she served on the for Board of Directors for half a century.

Altshuler's family is asking that, instead of flowers, donations be made in her honor to the Salvation Army.