Washington’s children have lost a fierce champion and we have lost a beloved friend. We are heartbroken.
As we mourn the sudden loss of Kip Tokuda and share our condolences, we reflect upon the many contributions that he made to children and families in Washington.
Kip was the consummate child advocate. His legacy will live on through the many ways his work and service touch the lives of Washington’s children.
Kip was an inspiration. He wasn’t just a great leader, he was committed to nurturing the next generation of those who would continue to build community and fight for justice.
Among Kip’s many contributions to children and families, we recall:
- Executive Director of the Washington Council for Prevention of Child Abuse and Neglect, leading the effort to develop policies, raise awareness, and advocate on behalf of children and families.
- State Legislator, 1994-2002, and Chair of the House of Representatives Children and Family Services Committee.
- Author of the Special Needs Adoption legislation to help improve the chances of adoption for special-needs children.
- Champion of the “Homeless Children’s Lawsuit” legislation, which provided services for more than 60,000 homeless families with children in Washington state.
- Service as Interim Director of the City of Seattle Human Services Department.
Kip was a special member of our Children’s Alliance family. We were honored to have him serve on our Board of Directors from 1987 to 1993, to fight alongside him for kids when he was in the state Legislature, and to benefit from his wise counsel.
He taught us and many other advocates to be confident and courageous. His steady focus on kids and justice taught us the power of knowing to whom we are accountable: kids and families.
We encourage the many members of the Children’s Alliance community to join us as we honor his life and his legacy.
Here is a recent statement from Kip’s family about their memorial plans:
We want to thank all of you have been calling, emailing, and sending all your many heartfelt and kind wishes. We are still trying to absorb what has happened, and it is so comforting to hear from people who also loved Kip.
We shared him with a large community of friends and colleagues whom he cherished, and we are moved to hear the stories from the many people he touched in so many different ways.
There will be a public viewing at Bonney Watson on Capitol Hill at 1732 Broadway in Seattle, on Thursday, July 18, from 2-7 p.m.
A Public Memorial Service will be held on Sunday, July 21, at 2 p.m. at 130 Kane Hall, at the University of Washington in Seattle.
We have set up a Facebook page called Remembering Kip Tokuda, and we invite you to send your memories and photos.
In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to the Kip Tokuda Legacy Fund, which is being set up and used to support the causes to which he dedicated his life.
Thank you again for your thoughts, your care and support.
-The Family of Kip Tokuda