Karen Hartman, 63

Karen Hartman (née Karen Elizabeth Pearce), 63, passed away peacefully at her home in Douglas on Jan. 14, 2018, after a two-and-a-half-year battle against stage IV pancreatic cancer.

Karen was born in Flint on Dec. 29, 1954, but moved to Grand Rapids at the age of 5. She attended Kenowa Hills High School, received a bachelor’s degree at Michigan State University and her master’s at the University of Michigan.

She married Jack Hartman in 1980, in Ann Arbor. Karen and her family lived and worked overseas for 15 years in Yemen, Egypt, Kenya, South Africa and Italy.

Karen’s employers include the U.S. Information Service, the American University in Cairo, the University of Mary Washington, and the U.S. Department of State.

She published five textbooks over the years, one of which is still in use. In her last year with the U.S. State Department, she was Deputy Director of International Information Programs.

She was instrumental in launching “maker spaces” in Europe, Africa, and Asia where the use of U.S. information technology was demonstrated and taught.

The Hartmans purchased their home in Douglas in 2007 and spent their summer vacations there. They moved to Douglas full-time in 2015 after Karen’s diagnosis.

Karen enjoyed golf, tennis, hiking, snorkeling, reading and cooking, and her overseas posts gave her the chance to travel extensively, something she loved doing.

Karen is survived by her husband Jack; their daughters, Tracy in Yangon and Myanmar and Hilary in Brazzaville, Republic of the Congo; granddaughters Charlotte, Lily, and Willa; sons-in-law, Dan Swift and Ben Mossberg; parents, Roy and Mary Pearce of Frankfort; and sisters, Janet Pomerleau of Frankfort and Sherry Calkins and her husband John of Montague.

A summer memorial is being planned. In lieu of flowers, donations can be made to Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, www.pancan.org.


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