WHC Advisory Board Member
Sue Lean, Vice-Chair
Exhibit Design, Olympia
Sue Lean first became active on historical events in 1970 when the League of Women Voters celebrated its founding and the 50th
anniversary of women's suffrage in the United States. For the Washington State Centennial in 1989, in cooperation with the
Washington State Capital Museum and leading scholars, she initiated and organized a major traveling exhibition on George Washington
as the state’s namesake with objects from the Smithsonian Institution, Mount Vernon and the National Archives.
Sue has worked on state and community events focusing on the U.S. Constitution, the first Presidency, Washington statehood,
and Women's Equality Day. Special features have included lectures, parades, ice cream socials and interpretive exhibits developed
both professionally and as a volunteer. Sue Lean worked with the state, county and volunteers on celebrations for the 75th
(85th for Washington) anniversary of woman suffrage (1995), the 125th anniversary of Susan B. Anthony’s northwest campaigns
for suffrage (1996), and the 150th anniversary of the first Women's Rights Convention in Seneca Falls, NY (1998).
When research revealed that in 1910, after 14 long years with no new states granting women the vote, the suffrage victory in
Washington state had the effect of reinvigorating the national campaign to get the vote, Sue Lean nominated Washington leaders
May Arkwright Hutton and Emma Smith DeVoe to the National Women’s Hall of Fame. She attended the year 2000 induction ceremonies
for DeVoe who was accepted.
In 2003 for the 150th anniversary of the creation of Washington Territory, an interpretive exhibit panel was developed with the
story of how Territorial women won and lost the vote. More recently Sue was the historic image researcher for The State We're In:
Washington, a guide to state, tribal and local government published by the League of Women Voters of Washington Education Fund.