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Joan Cathey

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Tumwater Mayor Pro Tem 

cathey Joan Cathey, Mayor Pro Tem / 
City of Tumwater, WA

Phone: (360) 754-4120
Term of Office: 01/01/2020 - 12/31/2023
Position No. 3
Minister, Presbyterian Church USA

Council Committees/Intergovernmental Assignments

General Government Committee; Health and Human Services Council (HHSC); Olympic Region Clean Air Authority (ORCAA); Thurston County Solid Waste Advisory Committee

Areas of Special Interest/Priorities

Sustainable practices in economic and neighborhood development; Environmental sustainability and public access to natural resources; Brewery redevelopment to maintain pristine property in the heart of the City, as well as economic development; Neighborhood connectivity; Maintaining and improving the quality of life in Tumwater; Public safety for increased staffing at the North End Fire Station and supporting the School Resource Officer program - connecting the school district and the City; To be an inclusive and responsive community in welcoming all of our citizens; To listen to the needs of local non-profits that are touching lives in the Tumwater community.


Joan Cathey has served on the City Council since 2008.  She is a native of California. She holds a BA in Biological Science, English and History, an MA in Psychology, and a Masters of Divinity in Philosophical Theology. She is a Presbyterian minister and has served churches in California and Washington for the past 35 years.

Joan came to the Pacific Northwest to be the campus minister at The Evergreen State College in 1992. Her diverse background includes being a business owner, a high school teacher and coach, a school board member, and executive director of a local social service agency. A few of Joan’s passions are gardening, golf, lots of reading and poetry writing, and spending time walking in wonder and reverence in nature’s abundance and beauty.

Recently, Joan represented the City on the team that created a unique partnership with GRuB and Tumwater School District to begin a farming program for low income at-risk high school students at the City’s Linwood Barn property. She lives in northeast Tumwater and is actively involved in the Brewery Neighborhood Planning. 

Tumwater Elected Service History

Council Position No. 3 - Elected to a full term 2008, 2012, 2016, 2020


Councilmembers do not keep regular office hours at City Hall. Please contact the Executive Department at (360) 754-4120 to schedule an appointment.

Mayor Pro Tem

The Mayor Pro Tem is elected to a two year term at the first regular Council meeting in January following a municipal election year. The Mayor conducts the election for the Mayor Pro Tem who is elected by a majority of the full Council.