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Services held for Risselle Fleisher

Risselle “Rikki” Fleisher, a former general counsel to the Maryland Commission on Human Relations and assistant attorney general, died Tuesday of breast cancer. She was 77.

A Baltimore native, Fleisher (nee Rosenthal) was a staunch supporter of civil rights, and in 1960 co-chaired the influential Congress of Racial Equality.

She married pianist Leon Fleisher in 1962. The couple had two children before separating, and divorced in 1975.

Meanwhile, Fleisher got her law degree from the University of Maryland, and was admitted to the Maryland Bar in 1975. She worked as general counsel to the Human Relations Commission from 1978 to 1988.

Fleisher was also a donor to Baltimore’s Public Justice Center, an advocacy group that fights against injustice, poverty and discrimination, according to its website. The family has asked that any donations be sent to the Public Justice Center in Fleisher’s memory.

Fleisher is survived by her son, Julian Fleisher; a daughter, Paula Beth Fleisher; and a grandson.

Services were held Thursday at Sol Levinson and Bros. Funeral Home