Donna Washut passed away on October 8, 2009. Born in Buffalo, Wyoming on June 20, 1939, the only child of Joe and Irene Washut, Donna spent her early years in Wyoming and moved to Tacoma when she was 12. Donna attended Jason Lee Jr. High and graduated from Stadium High School in 1957, then went on to attend Central Washington University.
Donna is survived by her 4 children, Steve Olson of Graham, Jeff Olson of Spanaway, Todd Olson (Dee Dee) of Puyallup, and Laura Thompson (Page) of Roy, 12 grandchildren, Keith, Bobby, Ashley, Brooke, Nathan, Lindsey, Katie, Kaylee, Amber, Cody, Christopher and Lisa, and 2 great-grandchildren, Emily and Justin. Donna also leaves behind former husband Leon Martinsen, with whom she reunited 4 years ago; she very much enjoyed her time with him.
Donna’s involvement in the automotive industry began many years before her employment with ASA-WA. Donna and her husband (Leon Martinsen) were in the automotive dismantling business and both very active members of our association back in the 70’s, which at that time was called IGO, The Independent Garage Owners of Washington. In 1973 our association was renamed ASC, the Automotive Service Councils of Washington and in 1986 became ASA, the Automotive Service Association of Washington, as we know it today. Donna was very active in all three of our industry associations. “In 1992 Donna joined Pete & Cherie Hunt and became the third employee of ASA-WA. Donna’s dedication and support contributed greatly to the success of ASA-WA. Donna has watched our association grow since the 1970’s and has been very influential in its growth and success. She has given her support and expertise to ASA-WA retreats, trade shows, seminars, unit meeting and many other association events. In addition to her ASA-WA duties, she volunteered untold hours of her time in support of our industry and association,” quoted by Pete Hunt.
In 1985 a group of women formed the ASA-WA Ascettes, and Donna was very instrumental in the formation of this active group. Donna was voted to serve as the 1987-88 State President of the Ascettes. Since the formation of this group Donna worked hard to encourage more participation from the women of our association. Over the years the Ascettes have raised over $60,000 and have supplied the state office with many needed items. 10% of all the money raised by this group goes into a scholarship program to encourage industry involvement. Donna also has been very instrumental in the success of the Pierce County I-CAR program and in 2006 was presented with the Western Region I-CAR Founder’s Award.
Donna retired from ASA-WA on January 31, 2008, but did not stay retired for very long. Donna became the editor of our monthly publication, the Dateline, in April of 2008.
“Donna meant a lot to this association and her influence on the association will go on for many years to come, she will be missed but not forgotten, and our thoughts and prayers go out to her family and friends” quoted Jeff Lovell, President/Executive Director, ASA-WA.