Kindness is something a lot of people aspire to, but few people live it as well as Trish did. She was brilliant, wise, and above all, kind.
Trish was born Deborah Jean Schwartz on March 12, 1957 to Peggy Whittle and Ralph H Schwartz, Jr. in St. Louis, Missouri. She left home when she was just 15 years old. Most kids who leave home that young don’t make it, but Trish flourished.
She completed her high school studies early, married Michael Milton (who preceded her in death in 1998) and went on to study Organizational Communications at Regis University where she graduated Summa Cum Laude in 1992.
She was excellent in her leadership role at Mountain Bell-Qwest and balanced that with being an exceptionally caring boss. After 30 years with Bell, she developed college level curricula with Westwood College before moving into healthcare and directing teams at University of Colorado Hospital and then Centura Health, installing modern medical records systems. She retired in 2017, but was sought after by employers for years. Just recently, she was considering a job that looked promising to her.
In addition to her demanding jobs, she volunteered with the Humane Society, fostering kittens, sitting on the Board of Directors of the local chapter and helping friends with their pet questions. If she did not have an answer, she knew who to ask to advise her.
She worked hard to improve her home, always striving for space to host ever larger barbecues and various social events. In the 80s, she ran Krystal Kleen, a house cleaning service with Michael Milton. In the early 2000s, she used her artistic talent in a greeting card company, Mikapari, LLC, working with Michael Hoffman and two friends. Even as she excelled at work, she kept busy with many side projects over the years.
She married Michael Hoffmann on November 13, 1999 at the Brown Palace in Denver and in 2016, they decided to open their marriage. Trish learned all she could about polyamory so she could not only do it well, but help others. She coordinated meetups for the Denver Metro Polyamory Group and was also active in a number of polyamory Facebook groups, particularly the Polyamory Discussion Group, becoming the lead moderator by consensus of the moderator team.
Her sage advice and perspective, her ability to listen and understand another’s situation and her finely honed people skills made her a well-respected and knowledgeable global resource. She was good at what she did for the community because of the love and humor she brought to the keyboard and physical meetups.
Just a month before her death, she gathered friends together for the first time in years due to Covid. She raved about each one as she introduced them. Her love and encouragement of her friends and partners were two of her many talents.
Trish was Wiccan and had a deep respect for nature and all life. She loved gardening but while Mike loved to grow vegetables, Trish focused on bright, colorful flowers.
The morning of October 3rd, 2022 she had a heart event and was taken to the hospital. Shortly after arriving, her condition quickly worsened and she passed on. Her husband Michael and partner Phil Friesen were with her.
She was kind, brilliant, wise, and beautiful and will be greatly missed by all who knew her.
She is survived by her husband Michael, her partners, Phillip Friesen and Tom Satter, daughter Kathleen Rhodes and niece Samantha Askew.
If you’d like to make a contribution to an organization in her name, please consider a Humane Society.