Obituary: Betsy Stilwell Petersen
Betsy Stilwell Petersen, of Wilmington, DE, formerly of Darien, died peacefully at home on Jan. 7 at the age of 84. Born in Indianapolis to Harold and Gay (Hutchings) Taylor, she was later adopted by her mother's second husband Abner Stilwell. She attended the Latin School of Chicago (class of 1947) and graduated from Smith College (class of 1951).
After college she held jobs as market researcher and publicist for Leo Burnett Company, editorial researcher for Time and Fortune magazines, and research assistant to the financial writer Sylvia Porter. A talented and expert financial journalist, she became Editor of the Magazine of Wall Street and worked as a freelance writer and editor for an array of periodicals, books, and corporate clients including Xerox Corporation. For thirty years she was Senior Contributing Editor for Boardroom Reports and its sister publications, assuming a lead role in covering personal finance and writing hundreds of feature articles, often based on interviews she conducted with prominent figures in business and finance.
She also undertook numerous volunteer posts, serving as President of the Smith Club of New York, Treasurer of the New York Junior League, and committee member of the Winter Antiques Show, whose catalogue she edited for many years. On the centennial of the Darien Library in 1994, she was commissioned to write a book-length history, published as So Many Friends. In later years she became an ardent bridge player and volunteered with the Darien Historical Society.
Her many longtime friends and loving relatives will deeply miss her generous spirit and lively mind. Married to Bruce R. Petersen (later divorced), she is survived by a son, Stephen, and daughter-in-law Lauren, of Hockessin DE, and two grandchildren, Miles and Stella. Her son David predeceased her, as did her sister Sally Anderson.
Private burial will be at Putnam Cemetery in Greenwich. A memorial service will be held Saturday, February 1, at 11:00 AM at the Noroton Presbyterian Church, 2011 Post Rd., Darien. Memorial contributions may be made to Latin School of Chicago and Smith College.
— by the Family