Linda Middleton to Lead as Grand Marshal in 2024 Forks Old Fashioned 4th of July Parade

Linda Middleton, the long-standing Executive Director at Concerned Citizens, will be celebrated as the Grand Marshal for the 2024 Forks Old Fashioned 4th of July Grand Parade. Linda’s dedication to the West End community and beyond spans decades, reflecting her lifelong commitment to service and advocacy.

Linda’s journey began in 1979 when she sought services for her special needs son. Limited options were available, prompting Linda to take action. She placed an ad in the local paper, and Karen Wittenborn answered the call. This connection marked the inception of Concerned Citizens and the Sunshine and Rainbows Child Development Center.

“We started a Parent Support group with regular monthly meetings to support each other regarding services for children,” Linda shared, recalling the early days of their efforts.

By 1982, Sunshine and Rainbows had become the leading childcare provider in Forks, committed to fostering the healthy development and safety of the community’s children. In 1986, the organization evolved into Concerned Citizens for Special Children, incorporating it as a 501(c)(3) non-profit. They began contracting with schools to teach special education programs for children aged three to five and welcomed their first employment program participant through West End Outreach.

Linda’s vision and dedication have led to significant growth. Today, Concerned Citizens operates three offices, serves 1,000 clients annually, and employs 120 people across the Peninsula. The organization is funded by 17 sources and offers 10 programs. “We support all ages, we operate one of maybe two adult homes on the peninsula,” Linda noted.

Reflecting on her journey, Linda remarked, “It has been a trip.” With plans to retire soon, her successor is currently in training. “It will be hard to give it up,” she admitted, highlighting the challenge of finding dedicated employees in today’s job market. “This is not a 9-5 job, this is more than a job.”

Linda Middleton’s legacy of service will be honored at this year’s Forks Old Fashioned 4th of July Grand Parade, celebrating her remarkable contributions to the community and the countless lives she has touched.