After the initial excitement of retirement wears off, it's common for people to feel a sense of loss. Many new retirees, especially those coming out of big careers, struggle with an unsettling feeling of disconnect and a lack of purpose.
Not so for Susan Brickey, a truly one-of-a-kind woman with a seemingly endless zest for life. After a consuming career in healthcare administration, where she worked on the team that created the Providence Health Care Plan, Sue remains as surefooted in life as she is out on the trail.
Upon retiring, Sue was able to fully devote herself to hiking, cycling, kayaking and creating music with friends. Just over the past few years, she has traveled to Japan, France, New Zealand, Peru, and Bolivia with her husband to further explore these passions of hers.
Sue clearly has a penchant for adventure, but she always loves returning to the Columbia Gorge: her cherished home. She still remembers seeing the Gorge for the first time when she was just thirteen years old. She was amazed by the waterfalls, the lush green landscape, and the geology. Having grown up in eastern Washington where the topography is flat to rolling, the basalt cliffs were new to her and completely breathtaking.
Sue's hope for the Gorge is that it will stay as lovely and magical as it is now so that others can experience and enjoy it in the future. The Gorge is where she has been able to discover new passions and achieve personal dreams; it's also a place where she can share her legacy. That's why Sue is including Friends of the Columbia Gorge in her estate plans.
What clinched the decision for Sue was Friends' ambitious Gorge Town to Trails project, a vision for a 200-mile loop trail around the Gorge that will connect communities, rural areas, and trails. Understanding the potential trails have to bring revenue to small communities, Sue wanted to see that happen in the Gorge. Her legacy gift to Friends will help complete and maintain the trails, promoting sustainable economic development as well as protecting the place she loves.
Sue's generosity and foresight will protect the Gorge far into the future, benefiting generations of people who she doesn't even know.
Thank you, Sue! Your cheerful spirit is infectious and your enthusiasm for the Gorge is inspiring.