End of Life Washington Staff
Interim Executive Director
Joan is a private, independent consultant who has worked with nonprofits for the past 20 years, including founding a national nonprofit. Joan has served as an interim executive director with various nonprofits over the past ten years.
Joan is an advocate of servant leadership and promotes the building of community by helping re-found and start new community organizations, providing technical assistance to struggling nonprofits, providing fundraising assistance, leadership development and team building. She also has designed and applied organizational assessments of structures and culture for strengthening individual nonprofit organizations.
Joan holds a Masters Degree in Public Administration and is certified through the Interim Executive Academy.
Client Support Director
Jillene became interested in death with dignity after losing her Mother to pancreatic cancer in a state where end of life choices were not offered. Passionate about meaningful final moments, she came to End of Life Washington in January 2016 as a Volunteer Client Advisor and was selected for the directorship in August 2017.
Jillene is a former leader in Federal Government with expertise in the areas of strategy, advocacy, and international engagement. Her skills support a long success story of working with other nations to achieve complex and wide-reaching goals.
Jillene has a passion for meaningful engagement, strong commitment to collaborative and innovative problem solving, and a desire to positively impact the lives of others. Trained in India, she is a Jnana Yoga and mindfulness practitioner with more than ten years of experience complemented by other contemplative arts and modalities, including Non-Violent Communication, Mindful Leadership, Mindfulness-Based Stress Reduction, and Yoga for Healing. Jillene is thrilled to be part of a leadership team that seeks to create a future where people understand their end of life choices and can die on their own terms.
Community Engagement Coordinator
Linda Estes (Community Engagement Coordinator) has spent a lifetime figuring out how to do things. In her career as an educator, she traveled to Australia and figured out how to teach teenagers to sail, kayak and live outdoors. She had one week to figure out how to do that herself. She then figured out how to teach math to middle schoolers who were 2nd language learners and disadvantaged by poverty.
In 2009, she became a member of the staff of 6 people who were starting the first STEM school in the Tri-Cities and figured out not only a brand-new math curriculum but everything else that needed to be done to start a “think outside the box” school. Linda resigned in 2015, just in time to help her dad through his final illness and decision to use the Death with Dignity Act. Since then, she’s been figuring out how to bring more and better access to the law in her part of the state.
Linda is thrilled to join the staff of End of Life WA to bring her “figuring out” skills to bear on getting the word out about EOLWA to people across the whole state.
Client Support Coordinator
Sally Thomae (Client Support Coordinator) is originally from Wisconsin where she earned both her bachelor’s and master’s degrees from UW-Milwaukee. Prior to graduate school she worked as a lab assistant, a medical assistant, and a pharmaceutical sales rep. She earned her MSW specifically with intent to work with people around end-of-life issues. Sally worked with Hospice in both Wisconsin and California, and also spent a year with Golden State Organ Donor Services in Sacramento. In 2009 she completed a course of study at the Center for Loss in Ft. Collins, Colorado, earning a Certificate in Death Studies.
Since moving to Seattle in 2009 Sally dove head first into a midlife crisis and explored several other areas including animal welfare, a short, ill-fated partnership in a wine shop, and a return to school to study skin care. She has been self-employed as an Aesthetician for the past 4 years. Sally is thrilled to be returning to the work that truly speaks to her heart and soul.
“I work at End of Life Washington (EOLWA) because I believe in our statement “My life, My choice, My death.”
When a person calls End of Life Choices Washington, it is often a very emotional and vulnerable time. The caller deserves an empathetic, attentive listener who will deliver the tools they need, and the support to implement the tools, while making them feel cradled in care.
“Being able to provide any peace of mind to potential clients is extremely rewarding to me.”