Katie Dolan, a long-time activist for the rights of disabled people in Washington state, died last Saturday, the Seattle Times reports. I had never heard of Ms. Dolan but I'm glad to have read about her important contributions.
Her family was among the first to participate in Northwest Center,
which provided developmentally disabled students with teaching and jobs.
In 1971, under what he once called a "tidal wave" of pressure from
Mrs. Dolan and others, then-Gov. Dan Evans requested the Education for
All Act, to make clear that Washington state children have a
constitutional right to education in the public schools, regardless of
In fact, Evans is related to one of the crusading parents and he
"recognized the value early on," said Janet Taggart, one of the
It was the first such law in the nation.
It started for her in high school.
As a Franklin High School student in 1943, she persuaded her father to
drive her to Camp Harmony in Puyallup, where persons of Japanese descent
were interned. There, she delivered graduation diplomas to her friends
Jane and Beth Sugura, according to the late Seattle Times columnist
Emmett Watson 50 years later.
Thanks to Mary Griffin, president of the Special Education PTA, for this story.