Joseph G. 'Joe' Betz, III
Betz, Joseph "Joe" G., III Joe, age 74, died peacefully on October 9, 2017 at his home in St Louis Park due to the effects of leukemia. Joe was a man of deep integrity and immense kindness. He was a giving man, committed to making the world a better place. He was a practical and curious man who loved science and the world around him. He dreamed of going to Mars someday but meanwhile devoted his time on earth to educational and social justice issues, especially as they impacted children. Joe was born on May 4th 1943 in New York City to parents, Joseph G. Betz Jr and Catherine (O'Shea) Betz. He graduated from high school in Syosset, New York and attended Northwestern University where he received a degree in marketing. He married Barbara "Bobbie" Carlson in 1965. In 1972 he and Bobbie and their three kids started a group home for neglected/abused kids in New York. He was an instrumental contributor to the establishment of services within the New York City shelter system. In 1974 Joe and his family moved to Minnesota because of a job transfer. Joe's career in business spanned a wide range of involvement with several organizations. He provided consultation, planning, IT management and coordination for IBM, Cray Research, Data 100, CDI Corp, TEKsystems and more. Joe was very involved in the life of his community. He served on the Chanhassen Park and Recreation Board, the Chaska School Board and the Carver-Scott Educational Cooperative Board. He was a Director for Opportunity Workshop, Southwest Metro Quality Council, Stillwater Prison Technology Education Project, Metro Educational Coop Service Unit and more. Joe's interest in peace and justice issues led him to become involved with the Peace Studies Task Force where he helped develop educational materials for high school students regarding military decisions. After he retired, Joe became a Guardian ad Litem for Hennepin County. He worked as a GAL for 13 years, supporting hundreds of children in the juvenile justice system. He was also instrumental in the development of the Safe Passages for Children of MN organization. Joe is survived by his loving wife Bobbie, their three children: Marty, Brian (Heather), and Megan Ellingson (Bryan); four grandkids: Cameron, Jaeden, Lucy and Stella; his brother, William "Bill" Betz (Vanessa); his aunt Phyllis; many nieces, nephews, cousins and countless wonderful friends. A celebration of Joe's life will be held on Friday, November 3rd at St Joan of Arc Catholic Church (gym), 4537 3rd Ave S. Mpls. Visitation at 10am, Mass at 11am followed by a light lunch. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests donations to the Southern Poverty Law Center or Save the Children
Published on October 12, 2017
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