She doesn’t know who turned her in: that person, according to an official, has been placed under the witness protection program. But it wasn’t long before Kathy Schmieder was back on the streets.
With her knowledge of the courts and bail systems she was able to raise the second highest bail amount for the Muscular Dystrophy Association’s Lakewood Lock-Up. The top bail raiser was Bill Peach of Budget Blinds of Tacoma with a personal total of $2015.
Lakewood Court Director Kathy Schmieder wraps up her time in the MDA Lock-Up after raising $1805 bail for children’s camps and muscular dystrophy research.
Schmieder has been Director of Lakewood’s municipal court system since just three months after cityhood. She oversees all 15 employees and administrative functions of the court and its numerous programs for offenders, including probations, domestic violence issues and home electronic monitoring. Schmieder said she loves the work in part because, “Lakewood is a really challenging court because of the range of case types handled and the cultural diversity of the city’s population.”
Her rise to such a position of responsibility is all the more remarkable because she has only a high school diploma. She does not however recommend her particular approach to a career path because times and demands have made a college degree the only path for young people today. Most others in positions comparable to hers have had to earn masters degrees to reach their goals.
Muscular Dystrophy Association District Director Anna Burrows released the results of the Lakewood phase of the 2006 MDA Lock-Up hosted by the Lakewood Fire Department, Bates Academy Firefighters and University Place Firefighters and said the amount is in excess of $25,000. With some pledges still coming in the total is expected to reach even higher.
Schmeider’s $1,805 combined with Peach’s $2,015 amounted to a remarkable 15% of the total. Ten bail-raisers exceeded $1,000, including three attorneys. The funds will go towards summer camps in Gig Harbor for juvenile victims of the crippling disease as well as contributing to research efforts by the Muscular Dystrophy Association to find a cure for the affliction.
To learn more about MDA and how you can help, call (253) 627-7575 in Tacoma.
Story & Photo by Ed Kane, Freelance Graphics of Lakewood