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Kay Stockholder 1928 1998

The B.C. Civil Liberties Association announces with deep sadness that Kay Stockholder passed away early today, after a year-long battle with cancer.

Kay had been a member of the BCCLA Board of Directors since 1991, and was elected as its president in 1995, shortly after retiring from her professorship in English at the University of British Columbia.

Kay very quickly grew into her position as president. She spoke often and forcefully in the media on behalf of the Association, and earned the respect not only of those who share the Association’s views, but as well of those who disagree with our positions on the many sensitive and difficult issues in which we became involved.

On a day-to-day basis, Kay was the Association’s driving force. She rarely turned down an opportunity to meet with groups and individuals to help them in their efforts so seek justice, to persuade decision makers to do the right thing, or to explain the BCCLA’s position on difficult issues. And she fired off missives to the press and to government officials seemingly on a daily basis.

Perhaps Kay’s greatest contribution lay in her ability to draw on a broad range of sources when helping to develop policy and advocating for civil liberties: sources from history, from literature, from the social sciences and from the richness of her own life. Kay put a human face on civil liberties in B.C., a contribution from which the BCCLA will benefit for many years. She will be sorely missed.