Karen Kidd Thomason
Karen Kidd Thomason '61 received this year's top honor from the Office of Annual Giving as she was named an outstanding volunteer for her work on behalf of the Class of 1961. Serving as a class representative since 1999, Thomason worked with the Class of 1961 Reunion Fund co-chairs, Pris Alsip Lange and Jerry Hillis, and members of the reunion fund committee to exceed their fundraising goal by 33 percent for their milestone 50th reunion. The Class of 1961's overall tally was 75 percent participation with gifts totaling $400,397.
As a student at Whitman, Thomason was involved in Delta Gamma sorority and majored in English and minored in sociology/anthropology. After graduation, she earned a master's degree in library science at the University of Washington. Thomason, her husband, Rob, and their three children settled in Seattle's Mercer Island neighborhood, where she worked for many years as a full-time homemaker before resuming her library career in 1985 at a Catholic grade school.
Her volunteer experience over the years includes her church, PTA, Delta Gamma Alumnae, Women's University Club, Seattle Genealogical Society and Friends of Seattle Public Library. Now retired, she and Rob enjoy traveling and visiting their vacation home in central Oregon and spending time with their 16 grandchildren in Seattle, Michigan and Indiana.
The Office of Annual Giving also recognizes all the other outstanding volunteers, including: Mary Belle Preston Wells '41 who achieved 100 percent participation among her classmates; Penny Penrose Bignold '56 and Herb Ladley '40 who reached classmate participation rates of 99 percent and 94 percent, respectively; and Duane '47 and Charlotte Goodnow Clayton '47, Darrell Allen '53 and Alice Estes '71, who made significant improvements in levels of participation for their classes. In addition, Rowland Thompson '77 and Kari Haugen '81 are recognized for the exceptional generosity of their classmates. The Office of Annual Giving thanks all 325 class representatives and associate class representatives for their efforts on behalf of Whitman this past year.