East Hampton & NYC LGBT Activist Caroline Joyce Whitby Remembered

Caroline Joyce Whitby
Caroline Joyce Whitby

Caroline Joyce Whitby, a community and LGBTQ activist, psychoanalyst and longtime resident of East Hampton and Manhattan, died at Southampton Hospital due complications from COPD (chronic obstructive pulmonary disease). She was 88.

Born on September 24, 1934 and raised in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania, Whitby earned her Bachelor of Science from Carlow University and her Master of Social Work from Fordham University. She later received her training as a psychoanalyst from the New York Psychoanalytic Institute.

Armed with a humanistic spirit imbued with a sense of compassion, Whitby served as a member of the local East Hampton Library as secretary of the executive board, secretary and former president of the Hampton Waters Property Owners Association and member of the National Association of Social Workers, delivering a paper at its distinguished conference in Atlanta.

She was also an usher at East Hampton’s Guild Hall, hosted a large dinner party fundraiser for the East Hampton Library’s annual event, and hosted the Feminist Press as well as “Bob Kerrey for President” events at her home on Long Island. A lifelong feminist and LGBTQ activist, she was proud of her work with SAGE, which provides advocacy and services for LGBTQ elders, and the Feminist Press at CUNY, an educational nonprofit organization founded to advance women’s rights and amplify feminist perspectives. She was an editor of Roe v. Wade attorney Sarah Weddington’s “A Question of Choice.”

Whitby was an avid reader and a gourmet cook who enjoyed eating good food, drinking fine wine and loving her cats Mindy, Jack and Mimi. She was known for preparing exquisite scallops Provençal and bourbon-soaked ham among other dishes.

She was predeceased in 2009 by her life partner of 48 years and spouse Betty D. Fox. She is survived by son James Duong Fox and grandchildren Jack Fox and Betty Fox.

A memorial service is scheduled for 2 p.m. Saturday, May 20, at St. Michael’s Lutheran Church, 486 Montauk Highway, Amagansett, where she was a parishioner..

Donations made in her memory may be sent to the Edie Windsor and Thea Speyer Foundation, PO Box 737, 123 North Sea Road, Southampton, NY 11968, or St. Michael’s Lutheran Church, PO Box 695, Amagansett, NY 11930.