Education advocate loses battle with cancer

September 29, 2009

By Chantelle Lusebrink

Kathy Linderman, a former educator and Issaquah Education Association president, died Sept. 26.Linderman had been fighting cancer for roughly six years before dying at Swedish Hospital in Seattle Sept. 26.

A memorial service to celebrate her life is at 2 p.m. Oct. 3 at Burton Community Church, 23905 Vashon Highway S.W., Vashon.

Linderman is well known for her advocacy as an educator and as the president of the education association for five years.

“As a former president of the Issaquah Education Association, Kathy Linderman worked tirelessly for staff and students alike,” Issaquah Education Association President Neva Luke wrote in an e-mail. “She always spoke with a strong and compassionate voice for public education. She will be greatly missed by her colleagues and students.”

Linderman graduated from Vashon High School in 1969 after which she attended Central Washington University. She earned her bachelor’s degree in education with an emphasis in music in 1973.

Linderman worked as an elementary school teacher for the Hoquiam School District from 1973-77, and then as a substitute for the Centralia and Issaquah school districts from 1978-1984. In 1984, she enrolled at the University of Washington to pursue a master’s degree in librarianship.

After completing her master’s in 1988, she worked as a librarian at Issaquah Valley Elementary School until 1997, and then as Issaquah High School’s librarian from 1997-2001.

She took over as president of the education association in 2001 before becoming the librarian at Skyline High School in 2006. She retired from that position this year.

As a librarian, she is credited with helping the district’s libraries get onto the Internet, said Sara Niegowski, the district’s communications director.

Linderman was also one of the founding members of the Olympian Coalition, a coalition of district administrative officials and school board members; union officials; Parent, Teacher and Student Association members; and Issaquah Schools Foundation officials who lobby for local education interests at the state level.

A full obituary will follow in next week’s edition of The Press.

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