Lesley C. Doonan, 73, of Warwick and Sarasota, Florida died on September 2, 2013 at Miriam Hospital.
Born in Providence, she was the daughter of the late Ada L. Leavens and David W. Sullivan. Ms. Doonan was a summa cum laude graduate of the University of Rhode Island and the Child Find and Supervising Speech and Language Coordinator for the Cranston Schools until her retirement in 2008. Ms. Doonan was a founder of the Rhode Island Rape Crisis Center, the second such effort in the United States of America. She was a founding member of the Women’s Liberation Union of Rhode Island which was the first Rhode Island women’s rights organization of the Second Wave. She was elected a Rhode Island delegate to the National Women’s Conference held in Houston, Texas in 1978. She was a founder of the Women’s Center of Rhode Island which was the first battered women’s shelter in Rhode Island. She was a founder of the Rhode Island Chapter of the National Organization for Women and the Rhode Island Women’s Political Caucus.
Ms. Doonan presently was Vice Chair and Director of Humane Programs for Veterinary Assistance, Education and Legislation for Volunteer Services for Animals, Inc., a statewide humane organization formed in 1979. She was the Coordinator, since inception in 1988, of the Warwick Chapter of Volunteer Services for Animals, Inc. Ms. Doonan worked to rid the city of the gas chamber used for euthanasia of animals. She worked with the Warwick City Council and Mayor to build the new Warwick Animal Shelter after which she formed Friends of the Warwick Animal Shelter, Inc. to help care for Warwick’s impounded and homeless animals. Ms. Doonan was a tireless advocate for the advancement of humane treatment and rights for all animals.
She is survived by her daughter Robyn Pothier; and her children Maxwell, Kyle and Kaitlin; and her brother Michael Sullivan; and his sons Samuel and Patrick. She was predeceased by her son Robert D. Doonan.
Friends are invited to a visitation Friday, September 6, 2013, from 4 to 8 p,m., with a celebration of life at 8 p.m., in the Thomas & Walter Quinn Funeral Home, 2435 Warwick Avenue, Warwick, Rhode Island. She will be buried in the Leavens family plot in Little Neck Cemetery, Riverside, Rhode Island.
Donations in her memory are welcome, and may be made to Volunteer Services for Animals of Warwick or the Pet Refuge of North Kingstown, c/o P.O. Box 6263, Providence, Rhode Island 02940. For information and condolences, visit TheQuinnFuneralHome.com.