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Groton - Linda Blaker Krause, a former Groton town mayor and town councilor who worked years as a planner in southeastern Connecticut, died on June 19 after complications from surgery. She was 69.
Krause, of Noank, was executive director of the Lower Connecticut River Valley Council of Governments and worked for years in planning and zoning for Ledyard. A service is scheduled for 5:30 p.m. on July 14 at the Mystic Arts Center to celebrate her life.
"I really admired Linda Krause," said Groton Town Clerk Betsy Moukawsher, whose husband Tom Moukawsher served with Krause on the council. "She had a fairness in deliberations when it came to budgets and decisions that I saw her make on the Town Council, and as mayor, she was really respectful of all the councilors and the public."
Krause was born on Dec. 26, 1944, in Trenton, N.J., grew up in Pennsylvania and graduated from a high school in Bucks County, Pa. She earned a bachelor's degree in economics from Simmons College in Boston in 1962, and a master's degree in planning from the University of Rhode Island in 1977.
After graduate school, she took a job for the Town of Ledyard, first as zoning and wetlands officer and then as planning director, her daughter Jessica Fay said. Krause then became director of the Connecticut River Estuary Regional Planning Agency, which was later merged with other agencies into the Connecticut River Valley Council of Governments.
She moved to Groton when her husband was in the Navy and quickly became involved in the community. She was appointed to the Groton Inland Wetlands Agency in 1974, served four years, then became a member of the Southeastern Connecticut Regional Planning Agency in 1979. She served there for close to 10 years.
"She could step back and see the big picture," said Irene Weiss, a longtime friend who met Krause 40 years ago. "She could do that in her personal life, and certainly in her professional life. She could step back and not get caught up in the details; she could see the long range, not just the immediate consequences."
Krause was elected to Groton's Representative Town Meeting in 1985, then was appointed to fill a vacancy on the Town Council in the spring of 1987. She was town mayor from 1991 until 1993.
Krause also served on the Conservation Commission in the mid-1990s and on various other groups.
Fay said her mother had an insight into people, which made her a natural leader.
"She was intelligent and one of the most intuitive, well-spoken people I have ever met in my life. ... That's a skill that so few people have," Fay said.
Krause could get things done without being the loudest in a room, Fay said.
"A lot of people will get an idea in their head and start spouting," Fay said. "She had an innate sense of when it was important to say something and when it was important to let it go."