Remembering Martha Aasen: The Sequel

My “06880” tribute to Martha Aasen — the long-time civic and political volunteer who died last week at 90 — mentioned many of her remarkable accomplishments.

Memorial Day 2018 grand marshal Larry Aasen and his wife Martha. (Photo/Ted Horowitz)

The Mississippi native worked tirelessly for the Democratic Party, at the local, state and national levels. She founded the Y’s Women, served as president of the Westport Library Board of Trustees, was a Senior Center board member, and a very active Sunrise Rotarian.

But that’s like saying Mozart “wrote music.”

In fact, Martha Aasen’s achievements fill several pages.

Here’s just a sampling.

Between 1977 and 1990, she held a number of positions with the United Nations Secretariat. They included:

  • Chief, non-governmental organization and institutional relations, Department of Public Information
  • Electoral supervisor, UN transition assistance group, Namibia
  • Chief, public inquiries and group program units, UN Public Services.

Previously, Martha represented the League of Women Voters of the United States at the UN. She organized the largest public meeting ever held there (1,800 people in the General Assembly).

Martha Aasen, in her professional days.

Before the UN, Martha held editorial and publishing positions with McGraw-Hill, Famous Writers Schools and Lyceum Books. She lectured at Southern Connecticut State University, and was an executive recruiter with International Executive Service Corps in Stamford.

Beyond her volunteer efforts mentioned earlier, and her political activity — for which the Democratic Women of Westport gave her a Silver Donkey Award, then named their Yellow Dog Democrat honor after her — she was a moderator and deacon of Saugatuck Congregational Church, a member of the boards of governors and directors of the United Nations Association of the United States, and part of the Mary Baldwin College alumnae board.

Decades ago, Governor William O’Neill named her an “Outstanding Woman of the Decade.”

And … Martha Aasen was also a justice of the peace.

May she now rest in peace.

7 responses to “Remembering Martha Aasen: The Sequel

  1. Wow!!

  2. Lila Shah-Wright

    Martha married my husband and I. She was a fantastic lady! She was so modest about her accomplishments (I never knew she met 2 Presidents!!) and focused so much on getting to know me and my husband. She was a highlight of our wedding. May she Rest In Peace. My deepest condolences to her husband and her children.

  3. Anne Parnas Skandera

    I lived on Ellery Lane, and our families knew each other. I never knew about all her wonderful accomplishments.

  4. Tom feeley Sr

    Great Lady🙏 ⛪️🇺🇸

  5. When did she ever find time to sleep?

  6. Bravo Martha. Rest In Peace and pray we follow in your honored footsteps!

  7. Martha was a true force of nature and powerhouse. I hope her legacy inspires and empowers others to get fervently involved in making a difference. But above all, I remember Martha as an open, engaging and fun Southern woman always ready with a smile and a chat. She will be missed.