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Karen Lee Krause
(October 5, 1940 - October 21, 2013)

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Karen Lee Krause

Karen Krause, Registered Nurse, Public Health Administrator and social justice advocate, passed away on October 21st at the age of 73. (Karen or Krause) graduated from Whitmer High School, Maumee Valley Hospital School of Nursing, University of Toledo (B.S.), University of Michigan (M.P.H.) and attended UT Law School. In her early years she worked as nurse for several health organizations. In 1972 she became the Field Nurse Consultant for the Ohio Department Health’s Children with Medically Handicapping Conditions. In 1976 she returned to the Lucas County Health Department where she served in several capacities and finally as Director of Nursing until 1993. Upon retirement she operated her own community health consulting business and also served as director of the local free homeless health clinic. Karen was the founder and first president of the Toledo Area AIDS Task Force Inc. She also served as the first HIV/AIDS Program Director for the Toledo and Lucas County Health Departments. As a result of this work she received recognition in the Toledo Blade’s “Faces of the Eighties”. Faith was central to Karen’s life and she was active in both her local church as a council member and as district delegate for Evangelical Lutheran Church in America (ELCA). She was the ELCA representative on the Toledo Metropolitan Ministries board, later Toledo Area Ministries. Karen served on several legislatively created, public policy bodies: Governor Celeste’s Task Force on Adolescent Sexuality and Pregnancy, the Ohio Commission on Nursing, and as Vice-Chair of the Ohio Public Health Services Study Committee. She was a member of Congresswoman Marcy Kaptur’s Health Care Advisory Committee. Since 1984, Karen was involved in electoral politics. She was active in political clubs and worked with both issue and candidate campaigns. She held a variety of rolls within these campaigns ranging from phone-bank volunteer to campaign manager. She served as a member of the Central and Executive committees of the Lucas Count Democratic Party. In 1999, she was elected to first of four terms on the Governing Board of the Educational Service Center of Lake Erie West. Karen served the Toledo District Ohio Nurses Association as acting Executive Director and the Ohio Public Health Association as a board member. She was also a member of the Subcommittee on Managed Care and Clinical Services of the Ohio Medical Care Advisory Committee, Ohio Department of Human Services, as well as the American Public Health Association, the Ohio League for Nursing and Sigma Theta Tau. Karen was a believer in the right of all people to have health care and work tirelessly in this effort. She chaired the Northwest Ohio Universal Health Care Action Network (UHCAN) and served on the board of UHCAN Ohio. In the last ten years, Karen was dedicated to the creation and work of the local chapters of Jobs with Justice (JWJ) and Interfaith Worker Justice (IWJ). She was the lead co-chair of JWJ/IWJ bringing together representatives of labor, religious and social justice organizations. Their work was critical in Northwest Ohio to helping pass the Affordable Care Act. Recognized by her community and peers, Karen received numerous awards and honors including the Excellence in Nursing Administration Award, and the Excellence in Political Action Award from the Ohio Nurses Association. She received the John D. Porterfield Distinguished Service Award (Ohio Public Health Association), Cornelius Congress (Ohio Nurses Association), Outstanding Health Care Leader (UHCAN Ohio) and the Barbara Klass Sokol Award (Progress Ohio). Karen is survived by her brothers: Keith Krause, Richard Krause and David Krause (Nancy), foster children: Tony Gecik (Jean), Daniel, Lisa, June (Hasen), and many grandchildren that make up her multi-cultural family. Visitation will be held at the Foth-Dorfmeyer Mortuary, 3815 Sylvania Ave. (at WoodleyRd.) Friday from 2-8 pm. Funeral services will be held on Saturday at 11 am at Glenwood Lutheran Church, 2545 Monroe St., Toledo, OH. Interment Toledo Memorial Park. Memorial Tributes can be made to Toledo Area Jobs With Justice/Interfaith Worker Justice, PO Box, 13048, Toledo, OH 43613.

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