Kathy Whitman(1959 - 2012)

Kathy Gail Whitman 53, of Tucson, AZ passed away peacefully at her home on Monday, November 26, 2012. She was born to Bill and Ann Whitman on August 24, 1959 in Tulsa, OK. Raised in Boulder, CO, she graduated from Fairview High School in 1977. Kathy received a B.S. in Range Ecology and Watershed Science from the University of Wyoming in 1981. After college, she began her career in the mining and environmental industry at Bridger Coal Company in Rock Springs, WY, where she did land reclamation until 1987. She attended Weber State University in Ogden, UT, and graduated in 1988 with a second bachelor's degree in Integrated Studies. In 1989, Kathy moved to Globe, AZ, to work for Magma Copper Company doing environment compliance and permitting - a field in which she became acknowledged for her expertise and understanding of government permitting processes. In 1990, she married Charles Taylor - a union that lasted ten years. From Magma Copper, she moved to Carlota Copper Company and handled her first greenfields project. With her knowledge of environmental permitting, in 1993 she began her own consulting firm, Whitman & Company, which handled government compliance for the copper mine sector. In 2001, Whitman & Company merged with Westland Resources of Tucson. She took much joy in watching the company grow from 35 employees to over 120. In 2003, Kathy received a Masters of Fine Arts from AntiochUniversity in Los Angeles with a concentration in non-fiction writing. One of her essays earned the top award at the prestigious Mayborn Literary and Non-fiction Conference in 2010. She had a talent for putting words together. She loved reading non-fiction and had an extensive library as well as an extensive vocabulary. She was always ready for a game of Scrabble. Many of her best childhood memories were tied to gatherings at the YMCA Camp of the Rockies in Estes Park, CO. Kathy loved all things outdoors and all things nature. She spent high school and college years hiking, camping and building trails in Rocky Mountain National Park. She loved that her career did not tie her to a desk but allowed her to be in the field on a regular basis. In fall of 2007, Kathy was diagnosed with Lieomyosarcoma, a rare form of cancer. Prior to that diagnosis, she enjoyed traveling in Mexico and Central America. She logged thousands of miles on her trail and mountain bikes. She was an avid UofA basketball fan and season ticket-holder. She loved Welsh Corgi's and, most recently, treasured her beloved cat Frosty who sustained her through multiple surgeries and set-backs. She is survived by her family who has loved her beyond measure: parents, Bill and Ann Whitman, Erie, CO; sister, Karen (Michael) Whitman Tritt, Lenexa, KS; brother, Mark Whitman (Carolyn Cunningham), Boulder, CO and her nephews and niece, Ryan Mahoney, Ashley Scheuerman and Logan Tritt, all of Lenexa, KS. She will be missed greatly by her dear friends and associates at Westland Resources, as well as by many cherished friends and clients whose lives she's touched over the years. A Memorial Service was held at Saguaro Buttes Community Church, Tucson, AZ on Friday, November 30, 2012 at 4:00 p.m. In lieu of flowers, Kathy asked that donations be made to one of the following: The Leiomyosarcoma Direct Research Foundation; the University of Arizona Cancer Center or the Gospel Rescue Mission of Tucson Women's and Children's Program.

Published in The Daily Camera on Dec. 4, 2012