Janet Miller Obituary

JANETMILL.TIF_20130513Janet Katherine (Meyer) Miller died May 9 after a courageous battle with cancer. Janet was a lifelong Kansas City, Missouri resident and member of Visitation Catholic Church. She graduated from St. Teresa’s Academy and received a BA in Journalism from the University of Missouri- Columbia. She joined the Kansas City Star Company in 1969 as a business reporter and copy editor, where her first beat assignment as a young woman was the rough environs of the Kansas City stockyards.

In 1973 she was appointed Assistant Financial Editor where she was integral to the Star’s coverage of the rapidly changing Kansas City business environment of the 1970s — ultimately rising in 1978 to become the Business and Financial Editor of both the Kansas City Times and the Kansas City Star. She was one of the first female Financial Editors of a major U.S. newspaper, and was part of the Star team awarded the 1982 Pulitzer Prize for coverage of the Hyatt Regency skywalk disaster.

In the 1970s and 1980s, Janet played a central role as a stalwart supporter of the efforts for passage of the Equal Rights Amendment in Missouri and the women’s movement in Kansas City. She was a Founding Funder of the Women’s Foundation and served on the Board of the Women’s Council and on the founding Board of the UMKC Women’s Center. As a great advocate for the arts gifted with a unique mix of financial acumen and managerial talent, Janet’s skills were in high demand among Kansas City area not-for- profits. Janet enjoyed a 22-year association with the Kansas City Art Institute where she served on the Board of Directors, including a term as Chairman. She also joined her husband in creating the annual ‘Art of the Car Concours’ benefiting the KCAI Scholarship Fund. For many years she was a dedicated member, officer and Board member of the Kansas City Friends of Alvin Ailey.

As part of a lifelong love of dolls and miniatures, she was asked to join the Board and subsequently became Chairman of the Toy and Miniature Museum where she set the standards for it to become a national museum. Among her many other not-for-profit and charitable affiliations, she served on the Board of the Kansas City Friends of Chamber Music, as Treasurer of the Westport Chapter of the Daughters of the American Revolution, and a member of the Council of the Society of Fellows of the Nelson-Atkins Museum.

She is survived by her husband Marshall and two sons, Jonathan Lee of Pasadena, Calif., and Daniel Edward of Atlanta, Ga. Besides her husband and sons, Janet is also survived by her seven siblings: Lawrence Meyer, Mary Suzanne Meyer, Joseph (Diane) Meyer, Mark (Dianna) Meyer, Deborah (James) Bird, Laurie (David) Hathman, and Brigid (Stephen) Oberkrom and by her many loving nieces and nephews to whom she will always be ‘Janie- Mom,’ and her beloved dog Betsy.

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KC Studio covers the performing, visual, cinematic and literary arts, and the artists, organizations and patrons that make Kansas City a vibrant center for arts and culture.

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