Kathryn Lee

Family Tribute:The life she lived was a life indeed; the life she gave was so much more. She was an industrious idealist whose uncontainable vision and energy inspired and ignited creativity.

She gave me faith in the impossible.She was the first boss to put faith in me.She is by far the best boss I have ever had.

Purple is her color: symmetry of action and reflection.

Her obstacles at Marsh were as insurmountable as the towers that scaled her success. Collapsed, in ruins of metal and glass, She Is Risen – on Top of the World!…

As the sun sets, her pure radiance vanished in purple beauty, she remains, rising continually in our hearts.

Two funds have been established in memory of Kathryn. Donations may be sent to the following:

Kathryn Lee Memorial FundAttn: Chandra GordonThe Nature ConservancyLong Island Chapter250 Lawrence Hill RoadCold Spring Harbor, NY 11724

631.367.3384 x116631.367.4715 (fax)cgordon@TNC.org

Gifts may be by check by mail or VISA or MasterCard by phone, fax or email

(card number, expiration date, amount of gift)

Kathryn Bristow Lee ’64 ScholarshipSanta Barbara High School Alumni AssociationSanta Barbara High SchoolPO Bos 6121Santa Barbara, CA 93160-6121

Gifts by check to SBHS Alumni Association, memo line Kathryn Bristow Lee Scholarship (awarded annually)

Gifts to both funds tax deductible

Kathryn Blair Lee: Holiday Extravaganzas

Kathryn Blair Lee was never one to do things halfway. Consider Thanksgiving. 'There had to be at least 25 people and dinner had to last three to five hours,' said her husband, E. Philip Lee, noting that there were always a theme and printed menus. 'None of this gobble up the turkey and go back and watch football.'

At 55, a senior vice president with Marsh Inc. who had recently moved to New York, she was a self-taught elder stateswoman in her information technology group. But in a field dominated by youth she stayed a step ahead.

'Her energy extended to every aspect of her life,' said Richard Shewmaker, who had worked with her since 1993. 'I remember a breathtaking cluster of California poppies on her floating home in Portland, Ore., the goldfish pond with a rocky stream and waterfall she designed at another.

'When I think of Kathryn in her office on the 96th floor of the trade center, I can see the pretty teacup and saucer she had brought with her. Those touches were wherever she was.'

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Today on 9/11/2021, exactly 21 years since that day, I am still regularly reminded of the good times we had as High School classmates and very good friends from 1960-1965 or so. Kathryn was genuinely one of the most intelligent and caring people that I have met in my lifetime, now nearing 77 years. She had always a rebel streak and was know as a rugged individualist at a very young age. We didn't have a lot of classes together because she was mostly in the "smart kid classes", but we were two of the really "bad guys" that went out to smoke in the parking lot at lunch and breaks. You never wanted to get into a debate with Kathryn, as she was always more prepared and knowlegable than the rest of us. She drove a goofy little Renault car that 6 or 7 of us used as a book locker so we had an excuse to hit the parking lot. She was always leader of the pack and it was evident early on that she would be one of those most likely to succeed girls. Her dad rebuilt two of my car engines with my "help" and she was not so much a girly girl as to not want to get dirty hands. I think about Kathryn and how much I miss her every year at about this time. She has a scholarship fund established at SBHS - I try to contact the recipients of her gift each year and let them know what a truly great person was Kathryn.
Bob Gibson, Friend
Sep 13 2022 1:19PM
I also knew you as Kathryn Isabelle. As a young mother I marveled at your patience with busy children. I think of you often and I miss you....
Mary Kay Lind, Friend
Sep 11 2013 7:59PM
Kathryn, I still think of you daily and miss you terribly. Writing this is difficult because it makes your absence all the more real. I have years of memories, starting with your introduction to the Portland office, your first challenge to administer a Novell network which, by the time you arrived, had been transformed into the enigmatic PCI network. Your love of technology, commitment to improving the business by constantly seeking out the best way to do so, enthusiasm and boundless energy to guide all of us through the process: all these things and more made you someone I admired and respected profoundly. You were consistently supportive and an advocate for the careers of those who worked for and with you. There aren't words for how much I wish I could see you again. I know you would not want me to be sad, but I don't know how not to be. You made my life better in so many ways: I will never forget that and will always miss you.
Richard Shewmaker, Colleague
Sep 14 2011 12:07PM
.....10 years have passed. You are on our mind always. Remembered Love, Jenn and Lee
Jennifer and Lee Holzberger, Family
Sep 11 2010 10:58AM
Gosh, I just starting crying this morning looking at all the names here... time has certainly passed but the loss is still great. Kathryn I think of you so often and miss your wisdom, friendship and laughter. Love always.
Sheri Bauer, Colleague
Sep 10 2010 12:08PM
I knew Kathryn as Kathryn Isabelle, from 1973-1977 while our husbands worked together at OGC. She gave an incredible baby shower for our unborn son in 1975--her culinary talents were outstanding, as well as her hospitality and kindness. She was a stay home Mom, well read. Her baby, Teresa, was an adorable child, I really enjoyed babysitting. I was so shocked to hear she was killed in the World Trade center. My last memory of her was about 14 years ago visiting her and her second husband in their incredibly beautiful home. True to form she revealed even more talents but always remained kind and welcoming.
Marcia Henry, Friend
Jun 26 2008 1:03PM
Kathryn, Thanks for everything. My prayers and thoughts are with you. Satish
Satish Vamburkar, Colleague
Sep 11 2006 9:21AM
Kathryn - I barely knew you...I had just started working in the Portland office as you were leaving for your new position in New York. But I wanted everyone who visits this site to know that you have not been forgotten...certainly not by your Portland colleagues. Know that our thoughts and prayers go to your family and friends...rest in peace Kathryn. Jan.
Jan Schnabel, Colleague
Sep 11 2006 12:48AM
There is only one boss who I can say I've been to a Jimmy Buffet concert with, one boss who I shared my 21st birthday with, one boss who fired my nerf dart gun at me, and one friend who showed me just how far you can go in the computer field with an English degree. I will see you again in time Kathryn.
Eric Sprinkling, Friend
Sep 11 2003 5:47PM
As time goes by I miss Kathryn more and more. I can never fully express how much Kathryn meant to me and how much she influenced me both personally and professionally. She was and is truly and inspiration - I will never forget all our times together.
Sheri Bauer, Colleague
Mar 12 2003 6:53PM
Before I heard the news that Kathryn was lost in the Trade Center collapse, the event was far removed in my mind, however on this anniversary of the tragedy, I am now plagued with hurt and sorrow for Kathryn and all those lost. While Kathryn was only a colleague, she was someone I looked up to from my office in Montana. Being stranded in Nowhere USA, one welcomed any interaction from the Portland Sedgwick Office and Kathryn was the one who was always there for me. I shall never forget your kind heart Kathryn... Gary Doerr 9/11/02
Gary Doerr, Colleague
Sep 11 2002 12:41PM
Kathryn, through the committees we were on together in Portland and the leadership you instilled in me, I will never forget the confidence and strength you represented as a woman in business. You were a significant mentor to me through your encouragement and guidance that gave me the will and courage to get where I am today. I will never forget you.
libby hood, Colleague
Sep 11 2002 12:29PM
Kathryn was and always will be an inspiration to all of us who knew and worked with her. She was a person who was always willing to go the extra mile to help anyone as much as she could. Whenever I would have a problem with my computer she could always tell me how to fix it. If not she would stop by and fix it for me herself. She was one person who always had a smile on her face for everyone. We all miss her very much very much.
Sandy George, Colleague
Sep 9 2002 4:00PM
I wear a mercy band bracelet with Kathryn Lees name on it. My family and I pray that she knew Jesus and pray for her survivors, for their peace and trust in God. We pray for them daily.
Gale Hopper, Friend
Aug 29 2002 9:08AM
Kathryn was my first real boss as I worked under her and David Throckmorton at the Sedgwick Portland office during high school and college breaks. Kathryn always made me feel important even though I was just an intern. She made time to check in with me, always concerned that my tasks may be too repetitive and mundane. She is the favorite 'boss' I have ever had because she weighed the concerns of her employees equally with those of the company. My parents also deeply respected Kathryn as a colleague and person. Kathryn did not hesitate to write me my a reccomendation for my first job after college and I will always remember her with great fondness. Thank you Kathryn for touching my life in a meaningful way!!! //ade
Wade Pederson, Colleague
Jun 11 2002 4:49PM
She was alsways willing to help people and no task was too difficult. If she did not know the answer she would find out and get back to you. I hardly ever saw her unhappy. I know she cared a great deal about her family.
Lori Johnson, Colleague
May 14 2002 7:17PM
Today, April 15th is Kathryn's birthday. I wish she was here to accept my birthday greeting. Kathryn was a caring, intelligent, kind and ethical woman. She worked hard and created teams that would always go the extra mile for the project and mostly, for her. I have a great deal of respect for Kathryn and feel honored that I had the opportunity to have known her, to have worked with her and to have been her friend. I will always wonder how much we all missed because Kathryn was taken from us. It is so difficult to find the right words to describe how much Kathryn is missed. It just hurts deep inside. I miss Kathryn everyday.
Eileen McGuire, Colleague
Apr 15 2002 10:36PM
I first met Kathryn in Portland only four short years ago. She brought me onto her Sedgwick team with open arms. While I had other attractive job offers to consider, I took to her personality and style immediately. She had such an unusual combination of an easygoing style and motivated attitude. In a field dominated by stereotypical 'techies', she exuded an individual personality and charm which made me feel comfortable and welcome. I was proud to be a member of her group. She had so many outstanding qualities and was an exceptional boss. She was always warm and approachable no matter how busy she became. She took the time to know each member of her team as individuals. She helped us work through our problems and encouraged our growth both professionally and personally. She and her husband, Phil, would socialize with us after hours on a regular basis. They opened their home up to us on several ocassions, making us feel so very welcome and showing us the truly generous hearts they had. In short, she went out of her way to make every person feel important. There wasn't a member of her team here who wouldn't hesitate to stay late and 'make it happen' to meet a deadline or help her on a project. She was always motivated and had the most inspirational 'can do' attitude of any person I've ever met. I will miss Kathryn as a colleague, but most importantly as a friend. She loved to garden and I will never forget visits to her home in Portland. She and Phil worked so hard to make such a beautiful environment away from the office. Every time I see a turtle, I will think of her. Kathryn was a self-made woman - one of a kind. I only hope that one day I too can be as successful as she was in both her personal and professional life. The passion she displayed for her life and her work is an inspiration for all of us.
Kay Farrell, Colleague
Apr 9 2002 4:03PM