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Libertarian women’s history: Kathleen Wikstrom

1 Apr

Kathleen Wikstrom (née Jacob) (September 1, 1957 – ) became a libertarian activist while a journalism student at Michigan State University, and moved to Washington, D.C., in the early 80s, to edit Libertarian Party News.

Kathleen was president of the libertarian-oriented bookstore, Laissez Faire Books, from 2005 to 2007, as a division of the Center for Libertarian Thought. For 12 years, she served as managing editor/designer/layout artist for the Laissez Faire Books Booklist & Review, before taking over full operation of LFB and relocated it to Little Rock, Arkansas, in early 2003. CLT ceased operation of Laissez Faire Books in November 2007, transferring it to the International Society of Individual Liberty.
Kathleen has also operated FreeStyle Publications, a desktop publishing and editing business, since 1982. She also served on the Libertarian Party Platform Committee several times.  She became inactive in the party from the early 1990s until recently, when she was a delegate to the 2014 Libertarian Party convention in Columbus, Ohio (pictured).

Kathleen has been involved with her brother, citizen-democracy activist Paul Jacob, in miscellaneous political activities for many years.

Kathleen is the mother of three grown children, whose father is her first husband, libertarian writer Sheldon Richman, whom she married in the early 1980s.  All of her children were homeschooled until college. While they were growing up, Kathleen was very active in the homeschooling community. She operated a children’s theater group for the homeschoolers for more than ten years, directing and producing more than 25 productions.

In 2008 Wikstrom was executive editor of Balletopedia, the website developed by the Lucy Burns Institute.  She is currently the operations manager for Stossel in the Classroom.