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Marion Southard Weiss

When Marion Southard married Phillip Weiss in 1926, she gave up her career as a social worker in order to raise her children. Back then, there wasn't much of a choice. But Mrs. Weiss used her professional knowledge in her volunteer activities throughout her marriage, serving with the Council on Aging, Health and Welfare, Planned Parenthood, the League of Women Voters, and the Seattle Housing Authority and many others.

In 1964 society columnist Dorothy Brant Braizer described Mrs. Weiss's work in the public sector as an extension of her traditional homemaking role: at the lovely Weiss home near Lake Washington she says, "No wonder, with such pleasant surroundings, Mrs. Weiss is particularly interested in comfortable adequate housing for others."

But Marion Weiss's service to her community clearly grew out of her professional role as well. Seattle was lucky that this accomplished, compassionate woman found a place to use her talents, education, and experience in public service. She died in 1971 after a four-year fight with cancer.

This exhibit was created in 2009 in conjunction with Washington State History Society's Exhibit, "Women's Votes, Women's Voices". Rainier Valley Historical Society celebrates Rainier Valley's many women leaders and their varied avenues of public life and commitment to improving their communities and beyond.

Explore other articles in this exhibit:

  • Beyond Laundry: Women Changing the World

  • Working for Change without the Vote

  • Mothers Club Leads the Way


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