Linda K. Williams was born in Toledo, Ohio, and has lived in San Diego since 5th grade. She has a BA in Linguistics and an MA in Education/ Reading.
She taught Kindergarten-6th grades in English and Spanish 1973-2013, and found great satisfaction in teaching Reading Recovery (www.rrcna.org) in English and Spanish to the neediest 1st grade readers in inner-city schools 1994-2007, helping them to joyfully declare, "I can do it!"
Linda's peace-making roots began in the Church of the Brethren (www.brethren.org), of which she is an active, long-time member; she is Peace Education coordinator for her congregation. Linda increased her passionate peacemaking efforts after an elderly family member was murdered in 1981; since then she has co-authored Caring and Capable Kids (which includes songs, stories, engaging group activities and discussion topics), designed to help kids become compassionate and responsible, and has written and recorded over 100 songs for children and adults on the themes of self-respect, respect and compassion for others, conflict resolution, drug abuse prevention, inner peace, dealing with feelings, and other pro-social and spiritual themes.
Then, after the Columbine School shootings in 1999, Linda felt compelled to bring the message of nonviolence to as wide an audience as possible, and was convinced that a Chicken Soup for the Soul book would be the best possible venue. So, she contacted CSSE with a proposal for a compilation which became Chicken Soup for the Soul - Stories for a Better World. She was thrilled when a volunteer story reader/rater thanked her, saying "Reading these stories has helped me see that there are so many ways to solve conflicts without resorting to violence!" What a heart-warming, hope-filled moment!
More recently, Linda has been devoting her time and talents to helping bring peace and Restorative Justice to the City Heights neighborhood of San Diego. This is the neighborhood of the San Diego First Church of the Brethren, where her elderly relative was murdered and where Linda also lived, and then taught. Linda is enthusiastic about the potential for Restorative Justice to help the repeat-offender rate drop dramatically--- both when dealing with chargeable crime, and when used instead of and/or in addition to school suspensions and expulsions. (Restorative Justice: "Where harm has been done, making things as right as possible.")
Linda lives in San Diego with her husband Rob and their rambunctious pound-puppy mutt, Gretchen. Linda cherishes time with family and friends, loves to "play with her plants," play the guitar, and harmonize. She finds pulling weeds ---and prayer, and yoga--- to be great for inner peace!
Rob & Cherilyn