Aaron Katz

Birthplace: Madison, Wisconsin

Age: 69

Occupation: Retired. Serves on the Skagit County Board of Health. Former lecturer at the University of Washington School of Public Health, focusing on public health policy.

Residence: Anacortes. Moved here from Seattle in 2019, after retiring and looking for a quieter, more walkable community.

Family: Kate Dougherty, wife.

Education: Bachelor of science degree from the University of Wisconsin, Madison, in 1974, and a master of public health degree from the University of Toronto, in 1975.

What do you like about living in Skagit County? “During COVID, it was so easy to be outside in uncrowded areas.” He said he’s enjoyed hiking in the woods and bicycling during the pandemic.

What are your hobbies? “Hiking, biking, travel, trying new restaurants, gardening, birding.”

The world would be a better place if: “(There was) less vitriol in our public space. We’ve gotten to a place where it’s acceptable to yell at each other and threaten violence to each other. That’s cancerous.”

Biggest pet peeve: “I like punctuality. I don’t like when things are late. But that’s a very cultural thing, and I have to tamp that down sometimes.”

Something that brightens my day: Waking up every morning and seeing the Guemes Channel. “It’s such a calming sight. You can for a moment just forget about the troubles of the world.”

When I was younger, I wanted to be: A baseball player. His older brother and sister both excelled academically, so “I gravitated to sports, to something I could be the best in the family.”

First job: He worked for a tire company in Milwaukee, in the warehouse delivering tires to car dealerships.

If you could vacation anywhere, where would it be? New Zealand. “As soon as COVID allows, we’re going to go.”

Person I admire most: His parents who grew up during the Great Depression and served in World War II. “In their two very different ways, two very honest, committed people.”

How has COVID-19 impacted your life: Katz and his wife moved from Seattle to a smaller home in Anacortes just before COVID-19. “Kate and I were in the same space almost 100% of the time, and that has been an adjustment. Both of us really liked our space.”


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