Catherine L. Longhi, MPA, President
Catherine joined the board in 2000, and served as president or co-president from 2005 until June 2008. She has been involved in medical ethics and issues of personal choice for many years. Over 20 years’ experience as a health care administrator and personal experience with the needs of terminally ill people and their families have strengthened her commitment to the principles of End of Life Washington.
Judith Gordon, PhD, Secretary
Dr. Gordon is a licensed psychologist with a psychotherapy practice in Seattle and Clinical Professor of Psychology at the University of Washington. For many years she conducted research, wrote, and trained mental health professionals regarding changing health risk behaviors. She has focused on policy and research in end-of-life decision-making since 1996. She chaired the Washington State Psychological Association (WSPA) End-of-Life Task Force from 1997-2010 and received the WSPA Social Issues Award in 1999 and 2007 for her work related to end-of-life issues.
Robert Free, JD, Past President
Bob served on the End of Life Washington Advisory Committee for many years before joining the Board of Directors. Bob and other lawyers from his firm, MacDonald, Hoague & Bayless, generously provided many pro bono hours authoring seven amicus briefs on behalf of survivors of our former clients. These briefs described for the courts the differing realities of what happens to families when a competent, terminally ill person is granted, or forbidden, the choice of aid in dying. They were presented to the Washington and United States Supreme Courts as well as various lower federal courts. Bob retired after 35 years practicing law and enjoyed teaching immigration law at the University of Washington.
ARLINE HINCKLEY, ACSW, VCA Liaison
Arline has long had an interest in the areas of personal freedom, choice, and end-of-life issues. Arline was a Public Health Social Worker for high-risk pregnant women and infants. She also worked with the hematology/oncology team at the University of Missouri Medical Center, where she instructed medical students in the needs of dying patients and their families. She joined the board in 1990. Arline now volunteers for a local hospice and is a Client Support Volunteer for End of Life Washington.
Sheila B. Cook, Editor
Sheila served as a board member of the Hemlock Society of Washington State in the late 1980s. In 1991, she was the volunteer coordinator for the Washington Citizens for Death with Dignity campaign (Initiative 119). In 1993, she was one of eleven founders of Compassion in Dying. Since that time, Sheila was a Client Support Volunteer and served as End of Life Washington Client Support Coordinator for 15 years.
Chris Fruitrich has been a volunteer client adviser with End of Life Washington for five years and has added such services as a publication designer, speaker and mentor to his EOLWA resume. Chris is a retired journalist whose experience includes writing and editing stories about everything from pigeon racing to solar power and the Mount St. Helens eruption. He was graphics editor at USA Today and Director of Graphics and Production at Congressional Quarterly. Chris has always enjoyed writing for diverse audiences. He has written plays, wedding ceremonies and wildly varied content for freelance clients from Seattle to Atlanta and Copenhagen to Tel Aviv.
Richard Gibson, MDiv
Richard retired following 30 years of ministry as the pastor of Terrace View Presbyterian Church in Mountlake Terrace, Washington. He is active with Peace Action, a grassroots organization opposed to war and violence. Dick is a board member of the Snohomish County Food Bank Coalition and founded the Mountlake Terrace food bank. He teaches classes on religion, archaeology, and the Bible at churches and the Creative Retirement Institute of Edmonds Community College.
Midge Levy, ACSW
Midge is a retired social worker with extensive experience in hospice. She has been involved in the right-to-die movement since her student days as a member of the Exit Society in the UK. She was a founding member of the Hemlock Society of Washington State, and served as its president from 1993-2005. Midge was Co-President of the board from 2005-2006. She is active with the Washington State Chapter of the National Association of Social Workers (NASW), served on their board and Executive Committee, and was a consultant for the NASW Policy on End-of-Life Decisions in 1993. Midge received the “Social Worker of the Year” award in 2000 for her legislative activities. She served on the leadership team of the Initiative 1000 (Washington Death with Dignity) campaign in 2008.
Steven Schindler, Esq.
Steven is a partner of the law firm Perkins Coie LLP. He practices trust and estate planning law, which includes advising his clients on health care planning at the end of life. He also gives presentations to lawyers on health care planning options and death with dignity. He is a graduate of Duke Law School and Southern Methodist University.
Robert Wood, MD
Robert retired in 2010 after 40 years practicing internal medicine, the last 24 also as Director of HIV/AIDS for Public Health – Seattle & King County. AIDS greatly expanded his experience with death and dying. He has been on the UW faculty of medicine since 1977, still teaches at undergrad and graduate levels, and is a part-time faculty of the Socio-behavioral Prevention Research Core of the Center for HIV/AIDS & STD Research. He became a volunteer medical director (VMD) for End of Life Washington in late 2010 and joined the Board in early 2015. As a VMD he helps advise End of Life Washington client support volunteers. He works with the state’s medical community to expand physician awareness of dying patient’s wishes and participation in the state death with dignity law. Bob is a member of the board of Lifelong AIDS Alliance, an organization he helped to found in 1983.