November 17, 2018
Obituaries

Linda Smith Dyer, former State House lobbyist, dies at 53

AUGUSTA – A memorial service will be held Monday for Maine lawyer Linda Smith Dyer, who died Thursday at her Winthrop home after a long battle with cancer. She was 53.

Dyer was active in politics and government as well as the legal profession and served as a top official in the administration of Gov. Angus King.

A founder of the Maine Women’s Lobby and a president of the Maine Bar Association, Dyer also worked the halls of the State House as a prominent lobbyist for years.

“A tremendously devoted state employee when she decided to enter public life,” said Sen. John Martin, D-Eagle Lake, who served two decades as speaker of the Maine House of Representatives.

Recalling Dyer’s career as an attorney and State House advocate, Martin described her as “always straightforward, honest.”

“You knew when you asked a question, whether she wanted to give the answer or not, you always got it,” Martin said.

Dyer is survived by her husband, Charles Jacobs of Winthrop, who is deputy commissioner of the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services, and three children.

Monday’s memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m. at the South Parish Congregational Church in Augusta.

Having grown up on a family dairy farm in Monmouth, Dyer maintained an expertise in farm and dairy issues and in 1999 was appointed deputy commissioner of the Maine Department of Agriculture.

While in that post, she was elected chairwoman of the Northeast Dairy Compact.

Earlier this year, she was inducted into the Maine Women’s Hall of Fame and was honored with the Sarah Orne Jewett Award by the Maine Women’s Fund.

For many years she served on the Maine Advisory Committee to the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights and was on the board of the University of Maine Foundation.

Dyer graduated Phi Beta Kappa from the University of Maine at Orono with bachelor’s and master’s degrees in mathematics. She graduated from the University of Maine School of Law in 1980 and subsequently founded the law firm of Dyer and Goodall.

Dyer served on the first Winthrop Town Council in the 1970s and was elected again to the council in 1998.

She was a founder and president of the Winthrop Education Corp., which has raised more than $52,000 to support Winthrop schools and is currently raising funds for a performing arts center as part of the new Winthrop High School.

Dyer is survived by her husband, Charles Jacobs of Winthrop, who is deputy commissioner of the Maine Department of Administrative and Financial Services, and three children.

Monday’s memorial service will be held at 3:30 p.m. at the South Parish Congregational Church in Augusta.


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