Betsy Ruzzi, 60


Betsy Brown Ruzzi passed quietly in her sleep on Oct. 12, 2022, surrounded by her loved ones. Betsy's tenacious attitude enabled her to battle breast cancer for five years, completing numerous trials in her efforts to stay ahead of the disease.

Born in Providence, Betsy graduated from Classical High School, going on to receive an undergraduate degree at Boston University and a master's in public policy at George Washington University. She worked in education policy for over 37 years, helping to establish the National Board of Professional Teaching Standards and the Institute for School Leadership and New Standards. The fundamental lesson from her scholarship was that U.S. schools were falling behind their peers and would continue to do so without significant intervention. Over the decades, Betsy worked to identify the core elements of top-performing global education systems as vice president of the National Center on Education and the Economy. These efforts culminated in a new law in the state of Maryland that established the blueprint for adopting best practices for U.S. schools.

An avid sailor and lively personality, Betsy made friends everywhere she went. Betsy was constantly surrounded by her loving family and devoted friends, including her husband Joseph Ruzzi; her children, Michael Ruzzi and Dr. Sara Ruzzi; her parents Susan and Charles Hahn; her late father Louis Reyn Brown; her sisters Amy Blau and Judy Stoer; brothers Marc (Robin), Jeffrey (Lorri) and Michael (Elizabeth) Hahn; and many adoring nieces and nephews.

In lieu of flowers, please donate to the Annapolis Dragon Boat Club.