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Dr. Karen Bolton

It is an honor serving our schools and bringing my unique life experience and passion for education to our school board.

Dr. Karen Bolton

Dr. Karen Bolton was born and raised in Erie, PA. She is a retired First Class Petty Officer who served our country faithfully for 20 years in a variety of places including Virginia Beach, Great Lakes, Pax River Maryland, NAS Moffett Field, USS Lexington, Crete, Greece, Reykjavik, Iceland, and the USS Abraham Lincoln before retiring at Naval Base Kitsap - Bangor. Dr. Bolton was awarded the Navy Commendation Medal, Navy Achievement Medal, Southwest Asia Service Medal with Bronze Star, Navy and Marine Overseas Metal, Armed Forces Expeditionary Medal, NATO Medal, and has multiple letters of commendation for her role on a rescue team during two separate aircraft fires on a flight deck.


Since retiring from the Navy, Dr. Bolton worked as a full-time professor at Olympic College in Bremerton for 14 years. She designed and developed the Organizational Leadership Degree Program, along with being a member of the Faculty Curriculum Council, Olympic College Adaptation Leadership Team, Faculty and Presidents Council, Guided Pathways Steering Committee Taskforce, and co-facilitator of campus wide diversity discussions (Expanding Our World-Views).


Dr. Bolton was elected to serve as Director on the Bremerton School Board in 2019. Since being elected, she has worked with her colleagues to overcome unprecedented challenges including:

  • Supporting the district through COVID without laying off any staff;

  • Ensuring all students were fed during the pandemic;

  • Successfully passing multiple levies, continuing to invest in education even in uncertain times;

  • And passing policies around racism and equity in the district’s hiring practices, ensuring a welcoming workplace for all.

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Along with serving as School District Director, Dr. Bolton is a member of the Race Equity Advisory Committee and UMass Global Ed.D. Program Advisory Board Member.


In her free time, Dr. Bolton enjoys working in her garden, volunteering with local organizations, golfing, and mentoring people who want to continue their education. 

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