Catchup – August 2016



I am so grateful for my good health, and I am seeking to understand this process of aging, of life and death that we all experience.

This year has been bittersweet; a year of wonderful adventures and travels.  I spent the summer examining old files, revisiting memories and special moments, and especially remembering times with friends and family and those who have gone.

Right now I am trying to move on from grief over my brother’s death, so I can celebrate his very special life.   This too is an adventure, but not one I expected or wished for!  He was my lifetime “anchor” and advisor from childhood.  And my chief critic.  I regret that he did not understand that I truly listened to him even when we did not agree.   I trusted him as my friend.

Unearthing files, photos and memories from the past eight decades of my life has produced new revelations and clarifications.  Some are worth sharing:

⊕ connecting  with over 100 former students from 1998- 2007,  plans for a  reunion  and the joy  of learning about their successful leadership roles.

⊕ a report I wrote in 1949 (aged 14)  about the State of Missouri, dedicated to Harry S Truman. It includes a most gracious “Thank you and Best Wishes from Harry S Truman, White House May 24, 1949.” I had a hard time remembering  when and how  this came about – but now it is off to the Truman Library

⊕ a quote from an unknown publication  (When Jane Jacobs Took On the World)
“The first half of the 1960’s produced a cluster of significant books written by authors who stepped boldly outside their fields.”   It helps to clarify for me why and how I had the courage to maintain my determination and belief in helping create a brand new concept for development  – ownership by women for women country by country:  “we know the problem, you have to create the solution, we will help you.”   This movement, country by country, is now a part of our global economy.   Where ever and whatever we did we relied on communities and networks of women and I am overjoyed at the thought of one more visit with some of those old friends and colleagues.

MichaelaWalsh-IMG_2239⊕ help from Barbara Crossette, an international journalist whom I have known and admired for many years.
An unexpected meeting with her resulted in help during a recent trip to Korea and to Vietnam. An introduction to her friend resulted in my joy of interviewing women in Hanoi’s flower market, street vendors, domestics, about how they finance their businesses.
See the article that appears in PASSBLUE.

These women reinforced my belief that the views and experience of women who work in “grassroots, local, bottom up economies” are essential to a sustainable global economy.  And I have renewed confidence that I am still challenged by learning from women around the world.

Please pray for my continued health and ability to grow and learn!!!!!!





25 comments on “Catchup – August 2016

  1. Frances Kissling on

    I love reading your email updates. Connecting with the issues on your mind; appreciating continued vitality; and remembrances of things past brought to mind. All the very best.

  2. Arvonne Fraser on

    You are much more organized than I at almost 91. Am being bugged by son Tom, our eventual estate executor, to get things in order and slowly, slowly…And I’m an ardent supporter of Compassion and Choices, delighted they are successful in CA now. I don’t have to pray for you; I know you will survive a long time and will keep growing and learning. That’s the secret–grow and learn and communicate with friends and colleagues. Remember those gone and that friendship is the secret of a satisfying, contented life. I’m blessed by knowing and keeping in touch with you. Am still so impressed you came to my 90th!! Have fun.

  3. Tinky on

    I’m so sorry to hear about your brother, Michaela. We need those rocks. But you are a person who can find (or make!) new rocks. They aren’t the same, of course, but they keep us going. I LOVE the Harry Truman story! Be well, and keep thinking, networking, and writing.

  4. Julie Lerman on

    Hi Michaela,
    I too, love reading your missives. I’m so sorry about the loss of your brother and that you feel you had loose ends with him. As I’m preparing to attend Carole Hyatt’s next workshop, I’m thinking a lot about the amazing, brilliant, courageous, creative women like you, Carole and of course my mom, that have shaped the course of my own life. Today, I do what I can to pass it along. I’m so glad you are still at it!! Also thinking a bit today about how self-centered and clueless I was in my early 20’s (a lifetime ago!) and how that may have impacted these same incredible women, including you. What a fool I was. So your email was timely. Thanks for your patience and generosity!. Much love.

  5. Sergine Dupin des Vastines on

    Interesting comments on your fascinating life.Keep going Michaela!
    You bring wisdom and joie de vivre to all of us.
    Thank you

    Sergine Dupin des Vastines

  6. Christine Bogdanowicz-Bindert on

    Oups Typos! this is the good one, not first one!
    Thank you Michaela for being YOU!

  7. Emile McAnany on

    I heard about Jerry’s death from Lawler but I wanted to leave a note of condolence with you. I was fifteen when I think I visited the Walsh family for the first time to see Jerry my classmate in high school. It would not be the last as high school and college passed. I remember Dede as a toddle and you as one of the kid sisters. I was so thankful I got to reconnect with Jerry and you a few tears ago and indirectly with the Walsh family. In retrospect Jerry’s friendship was so meaningful even though there were decades of lost contact. I see you as one of my important links back to Kansas City now, in addition to my own family, and a lot of great memories. But as important is your own work and your forward looking at women and development in which I share another strong link with the past, present and future. Thanks for the memories but more important for the vision of the future when women can receive the critical recognition for making the world go round.



  8. Jacqueline de Chollet on

    It was great reading you today and all my sympathy over the loss of your beloved brother. Let’s get together as I will be in the city starting September 8. All best, jacqueline de Chollet

  9. Anne S. Walker on

    Dear Michaela
    It’s so wonderful to hear from you and to know you are well and enjoying life. You have done so much to support women’s rights worldwide and your legacy as one who helped women to have access to funds with which to build their lives and their businesses is one never to be forgotten. I know you have accomplished much more, but that is one that is unique and memorable. Maybe one day you will visit Australia? It would be so good to see you! Best regards,

  10. jane sloane on

    Dearest Michaela, I am so very sorry to hear of your brother’s death – I can only imagine your grief and loss. You are a force for good and it’s so good to hear about all you’ve been thinking and doing in the world in support of women. I really hope it’s possible to catch up soon. I’m in Australia at present and will be taking up a new role as Director, Women’s Empowerment Program with The Asia Foundation next month – still based in San Francisco however with regular trips to the east coast and beyond. Love Jane

  11. Stacy Kellt on

    Dear Micheals,
    I feel honored to have received your email and to read about your life. From the moment I met you I knew I had just met a true warrior. Thank you for making the world a better place and for sharing your inner thoughts. They inspire me.

  12. Jean-Roger Mercier on

    Dear Michaela, let me associate myself with all the sincere condolences that you receive from around the world. As far as your unique pionneering work, I increasingly see and appreciate the developments that, albeit much too slow and chaotic, take place around me on gender issues understanding and action. Without the likes of Michaela Walsh we would still be in much darker times. Your old crazy French (oxymoron, pleonasm?) buddy.

  13. Mayra Sacco on

    Dear Michaela, first my condolences as I’m very sorry to hear about the loss of your brother, your “anchor.” I love that you now are turning to celebrating his life instead of mourning his death as this will bring you joy. Always remember your thoughts are yours to change and with it life follows. Since I know you’re exploring aging and death, you might find Michael Singer’s book “The Untethered Soul” very interesting especially the one chapter on Contemplating Death.” Death is what propels us to live. Keep living and doing the excellent work that you do as you’ve changed countless women’s lives for the better!! Enjoy your adventures, and most importantly the journey 😊 Best, Mayra

  14. Kelly Grover on

    You don’t know me although we met once a few years back. I am Melanie Grover’s father. Mel forwarded me this update. I just wanted to take this opportunity to thank you for the wonderful and very significant influence you have been for Mel. From walking her butt off showing her around NYC to the strong “you can do it and have no fear” attitude you purvey. Mel is an amazing young woman and I give much credit to you and your tutelage for guidance on her journey. May you continue in health and happiness as you continue to influence and change lives around the world is my hope. Again, thanks for all. Kelly Grover. PS Hopefully you and Mel can grab a bite and catch up sometime soon.

  15. Elena Toth on

    Dear Michaela,
    Thank you for hour updates.
    I am very sorry about your brother and I imagine how much you miss him.
    I am also very happy to know that you are well and healthy, full of life and love.
    I am in Italy and will be back in NY in September. I would really like to see you and we can talk a little
    Much love

  16. Emmanuelle Chiche on

    I like your notes very much. I was lucky to see next you at a Eleanor Roosevelt breakfast at the UN honoring Hillary Clinton many years ago. You told me how it all started. The Women’s World Banking is the first NGO that I started to follow back then with mail and library search when I came to NY from France. What a thrill to meet you then and now our next President- Hillary Clinton in the fall. I will check to see if you give a talk or a panel soon in NYC. I would like to say hi again. Thank you for all your work and for inspiring millons of us. Best, Emmanuelle Chiche

  17. Emmanuelle Chiche on

    I like your notes very much. I was lucky to sit next you at a Eleanor Roosevelt breakfast at the UN honoring Hillary Clinton many years ago. You told me how it all started. The Women’s World Banking is the first NGO that I started to follow back then with mail and library search when I came to NY from France. What a thrill to meet you then and now our next President- Hillary Clinton in the fall. I will check to see if you give a talk or a panel soon in NYC. I would like to say hi again. Thank you for all your work and for inspiring millons of us. Best, Emmanuelle Chiche

  18. susan winer on

    Michaela: articulate, thoughtful and loving…still and always. thanks for keeping me in “the loop”…and for sharing…so much past and now, without a doubt…so much future!

  19. Dora Cudjoe on

    Dearest Michaela,
    I am just reading that your brother has gone ahead of us. The last time we spoke you were visiting him. Please be comforted, Auntie Michaela (as your Godson calls you). We have not made our fun trip to PA yet. We should if it would help to get you some zest back. Thank you for writing. I am all gingered to keep a journal all over again.
    Thanks Michaela and please be comforted. Thank God for great role models and advisors like you. I always remember with such warmth in my heart the good days at Manhattanville College during the Global Student Leadership days!
    You are a true blessing!
    I very much look forward to the reunion!!!

  20. Bruce Fogel on

    …so very sorry to hear of your brother passing, but as we’ve said before, all good things must end. Nice to know am not the only one cleaning out files and ‘summing up’ a lifetime for the next great adventure. Great to have you as a kind neighbor and dear friend.

  21. Nili Safavi on

    Dear Michaela,

    I loved reading this post! You are truly amazing and I feel so lucky to have you in my life. You’ve done so many remarkable things and never stopped learning, challenging the status quo, and leading change!

    I hope and pray that we will all get to benefit from your wisdom and advice for many more years to come.

    Sending you much love and really looking forward to seeing you tomorrow!

    Xxoo Nili

  22. Sheila evans on

    Dear Michaela. So glad to have heard from you as it has been eons. Thought of you on your birthday. You are quite an inspiration. I am so sad about Jerry’s death. He was quite a unique person. I am making a trip to MN to visit. Hope you get lots more traveling in and you are always welcome here.

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