Joanne Elinor Dorman
Longtime Kodiak resident Joanne Elinor Dorman was called home to the Lord on October 3, 2021, at the age of 84. She was born on September 8, 1937 to Irma I. and Hugo A.Oberg, in San Fransisco, California.
Joanne was an only child raised by her aunt and uncle, Gerda and Nels Erickson. She grew up in Upper Preston, Washington, in a Swedish community where she became fluent in the Swedish language. After graduation from Issaquah High School, she attended Washington University. As a young woman Joanne played French horn for the Seattle Youth Symphony.
In 1958, at 21 years of age, Joanne Oberg married the love of her life, Charles “Charlie” Dorman whom she met at a local dance. Together they were blessed with three children: Ann (Dorman) Ellingson, Dan Dorman and Todd Dorman. Joanne had all her children and beloved grandchildren live on-island.
During their 55 years of marriage, Charlie and Joanne, turned an original herd of Jersey cows he bought at age 17 into a full-fledged dairy production called Cedar Brook Farms. Farm production included milking 100 cows daily, complete with delivery service. In addition to dairy production, Charlie and Joanne branched out into raising crops and beef cattle in the Willamette Valley of Oregon. During this time, Joanne also went on to graduate from Pacific University with a Baccalaureate degree in teaching and taught math at Tom McCall Upper School in Forest Forest Grove, Oregon.
In 1979, Joanne and Charlie turned their sights to Alaska, where farming was still being pioneered. She and Charlie, with their three children, travelled the Alcan to Kodiak where they were free to follow their dreams of raising various types of livestock. In addition, they provided Kodiak Island with a piggery from which they produced wonderful smoked hams and turkeys for local holiday tables.
During the busy farming years, Joanne was a familiar face working at the local Sutliff ’s True Value hardware store, while Charlie was a firefighter for the City of Kodiak. They both operated Kodiak Smoking and Processing for the next 10 years until their mutual retirements.
Ranching in Kodiak can be a bit out of the ordinary. Charlie and Joanne brought 30 reluctant bison by barge from the mainland of Alaska over to Kodiak Island, and off-loaded them onto the range in Saltery Cove in 2002. The bison thrived. The ranch had successfully produced healthy grass-fed meat for the island until recently, when the herd was relocated to Sitkalidak Island.
Joanne was a loving wife, devoted to Charlie’s adventures and entrepreneurial spirit. She was proceeded in death by her husband in 2014. Her favorite on-island traveling was flying with her son Dan to fish camp in Moser Bay or a drive to the tree farm. She loved old farmhouses, music, singing, and hosting holiday meals with her family. Joanne found joy in her children’s successes; Todd for his green thumb and the Dorman Tree Farm, Dan for his love of flying and Ann for her artistic and nursing talents.
In more recent years, Joanne resided at Sunrise Assisted Living and considered staff her extended family for their love and compassion. She delighted when Jhey would play the piano, or the Lions Club would offer a sing-along. She enjoyed weekly tea with her dear friend MaryAnn that she’d met when both had lost their husbands. Through the years, she was a member of the Kodiak Senior Center, local singing group Golden Tones, attended weekly Scrabble games at the Kodiak Senior Center. She attended the Kodiak Bible Chapel.
Joanne is survived by her daughter, Ann Ellingson; son, Dan Dorman and his wife Kim; son, Todd Dorman and his wife Celeste; and grandchildren Rhiannon Ellingson, Joseph Malutin, Mariel Ellingson, Christopher Malutin, Zachary Watkins, and Megan Dorman. She is also is survived by her brother-in-law, Jim and his wife Carmen Dorman; nephew Jimmy Dorman and his wife Debbie. She was also blessed to have numerous lifelong loving friends.
A private family graveside service was held Oct 7, 2021. Condolences may be sent to the family at 1412 Zentner Street, Kodiak, AK 99615.