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Godenne counseled young people through the shoals of adolescence.
Although never a parent herself, Ghislaine D. “Ghilly” Godenne spent more than 30 years analyzing adolescents’ behavior and counseling them as they navigated the increasingly complex shoals of family breakups, economic turmoil, and the sexual revolution.
By founding the Adolescent Psychiatric Clinic at The Johns Hopkins Hospital in 1964, directing the university’s Counseling and Psychiatric Services on the Homewood campus from 1973 to 1995, and becoming the first woman to head the American Society for Adolescent Psychiatry, she earned international recognition and the title of baroness from the King of Belgium for services to her native land.
Godenne died on November 23, 2013, at her Baltimore home. She was 89.
In 1991, Godenne told The Baltimore Sun that college students then were “more disturbed than college students 10 years ago. And they are certainly more disturbed than they were 20 years ago.” A professor of psychiatry, psychology, pediatrics, and hygiene, Godenne believed the increase in parental divorce, employment uncertainty, and increasing openness about sexual identity contributed to the trend.