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Lillian Lucille Henken Press 1924-2020

Lillian Lucille Henken Press, 95, born October 18, 1924 in Everett, Massachusetts, loving and beloved mother and grandmother, passed away Sunday, April 26, 2020 at Overlake Hospital in Bellevue, Washington. 

She is survived by her son, Lowell Press, daughter-in-law Sasha Press and grandchildren Logan Press and Hayden Press, all of Bellevue; and by her sister, Mildred Henken of Lexington, and her nieces, Karen Henken of San Diego and Donna Henken of New York. 

Her energetic, vivacious, caring spirit will always be with us, and her service to the community as a pioneer in education and mental health will live on in the hearts of those whose lives she touched.

Founding Director of the Kentucky Governor’s Scholars Program, Lillian moved with her husband, the late O. Leonard Press, to Lexington in 1952. Among her accomplishments she was the Founding President of the National Conference of Governor’s Schools, Program Director at WVLK, Executive Assistant to the Commissioner of Mental Health, Dale Farabee, Special Assistant to the Appalachian Regional Commission Co-Chair, Al Smith, Founding Chair of the Women’s Network and a trustee on the Centre College Board for 26 years. She received an honorary degree from Centre College and an honorary doctorate from the University of Kentucky. On the latter occasion, UK President, Dr. Eli Capilouto, said of her and her husband, “You bestowed upon the Commonwealth an abundance of goodness and talent that still lifts us all.” 

She leaves behind so many dear friends who meant the world to her. May she rest in peace at Lexington Cemetery with her husband, Len, and nearby their longtime friends, Connie and Dave Wilson. 

A memorial service will be held at a later date. 

In lieu of flowers, please consider a donation to Centre College in memory of Lil Press.