Dr Kathy ‘Kat’ Siner (1954-2022)
“Do unto others as you would like them to do to you.”
Kat unexpectedly passed on November 1st, 2022, in her home in Indianapolis. She was born in 1954 in Nebraska to her United Methodist parents, the Reverend John and Gerri Siner. Kathy first learned the Golden Rule by their living example, and she ultimately grew to regard it as a fundamental ethical truth to live by.
All those who knew Kat recognized her intelligence. An outspoken protective advocate, she was caring and just. A natural beauty, she was stylish and sophisticated. A crafty party planner, she was artistic and generous. Nevertheless, her most striking aspects were her morality, ethics, and character.
Many of her childhood memories are of the Near Eastside neighborhood to which she dedicated so much of her life. When she was a child, Kat’s father was a minister at the church formerly located on Windsor across from Spades Park. She went on to graduate from Peru High School where she had participated in many publications and was named Homecoming Queen her senior year.
Kat then earned a BS in Journalism at the University of Evansville. While in college, she was a member of the Alpha Lambda Delta sorority and performed as a Tigerette. She went on to attend The University of Leuven in Belgium to receive her BA in Philosophy. She continued to be an active writer and photographer throughout her academic career. Unbeknownst to her parents, she travelled solo and hitchhiked overseas. She backpacked across Europe as far north as the Arctic Circle to as far south as Morocco.
Some of her academic accolades include the presentation of her paper “On Governmental Power Structures” at the World Congress of Philosophy in Montreal, as well as being a commentator at the International Hume Society at the Montreal & Toronto International Conferences. She received her MA and later a Doctorate in Philosophy from IU. She taught courses in philosophy, religion, logic, and ethics during her career at IUPUI, Ivy Tech, and the University of Indianapolis.
Kat later returned to Indy’s Near Eastside after the birth of her daughter and purchased a neglected home. She tackled its renovation through many late nights of labor. To make ends meet, Kat went “from Hume to Homes.” She poured herself into construction and community development through collaboration with such organizations as NESCO, ECI, INHP, and KIB (among others). She managed housing inspections for IHA for several years, as it was deeply important to her to protect Section 8 tenants from predatory landlords. During her construction career she rehabilitated countless homes, and today you can still find homes painted in her signature color schemes throughout the Near Eastside.
Kat was active in her community for her entire life. She served on the Neighborhood Association in addition to publishing a quarterly neighborhood paper called The Sneaker. She volunteered and campaigned with numerous local organizations and churches, including the many hours she put toward establishing LYN House. She had a dream of one day opening Siner’s Diner in the neighborhood.
Kat was an advocate for civil rights, feminism, survivors, social equality, workers’ rights, community organization, and standing up always for the little guy. She was an active and informed voter who believed in democracy and enjoyed spirited debate.
Kat will be remembered the most for her charitable spirit. She would always put others before herself. She dedicated many years to the caretaking of both her mother and her sister. She always made charitable contributions a priority and supported many causes. This was in addition to the countless personal acts of service she performed directly within the community, and in spite of her own hardships.
Kat is preceded in death by her parents and by her brother, Tim. She is survived by her proudest achievement—her daughter, Halley—as well as by her sister, Darla, and by her son-in-law, Mohammad.
A memorial service is to be held Saturday, November the 19th at 3 PM, at First Free Methodist Church in Indianapolis. For the health and safety of all who wish to attend, an additional outdoor Celebration of Life will be held at 3 PM on her birthday—March 18th, 2023, at 1701 Commerce Ave.
In lieu of flowers, memorial donations to either the Urban League or Legal Aid Society of Indianapolis are encouraged.