Dec 5, 1956 – Dec 7, 2018
Kim Nesselquist passed away Dec. 7, 2018 in Seattle, Washington, after being diagnosed with renal cancer in March. Kim fell into a deep and peaceful sleep surrounded by loved ones, with Glade Jul (Silent Night) playing in the background.
Kim was born in Fredrikstad, Norway and grew up in Nesbyen, Norway. He traveled abroad to study at Pacific Lutheran University in 1980, graduating with a bachelor’s degree in political science. While at PLU he met Krystn Soltau, who would be his wife for 33 years. Upon graduation in 1983, they returned to Norway and lived in Drammen, Norway until 1990.
There, Kim worked as a political adviser for the Conservative Party, served as advisor in the Mayor’s Office in the City of Oslo, and as a deputy minister (Byraadssekretaer) of Health and Social Services. He was twice elected to the City Council in his hometown of Drammen.
Upon returning to the United States in 1990, Kim established a real estate investment company specializing in apartment building investments and condominium development. He served on the board of Work Wear, Inc., a company owned by Krystn. He also served as CEO of the Norwegian American Foundation and worked as director of the Office of Advancement and University Relations at Pacific Lutheran University. He also served as a regent at PLU.
During this time, Kim and Krystn became the proud parents of Elise, Per, and Christian.
Kim was proud of his Norwegian heritage and served on the boards of a number of Norwegian-American institutions, including the Norwegian-American Chamber of Commerce, of which he was president; the Norse Home Retirement Center; the Norwegian American Weekly; and the University of Washington Center for Scandinavian Studies.
In 1998, Kim was appointed by His Majesty King Harald V to represent Norway as Honorary Consul of Washington State and Idaho. It was a role Kim performed with great honor. He loved representing Norway’s heritage, culture and values. Kim carried out his duties with a graciousness that had a great impact on many, resulting in significant accomplishments and a lasting legacy. He was an important bridge between Norway and the Norwegian-American community.
Kim advised and assisted Norwegian companies in their US endeavors, and was the driving force in planning Their Majesties the Queen’s and the King’s visit to Seattle and Washington State in 1995, and, twenty years later, His Majesty’s return visit in 2015.
In 2012, His Majesty King Harald V appointed Kim a Knight, First Class, for his tireless work in support of Norwegian interests. Kim carried out this responsibility with remarkable stamina, good humor and enthusiasm. His respect, honorable ways, genuine kindness for all, devotion and dedication to all things Norway will leave an unparalleled legacy both in Norway and the United States.
Last month, a fund was established in Kim’s name. The Consul Kim Nesselquist Norwegian-American Community Endowed Fund will allow several students to attend the University of Washington each year.
However, of the many accomplishments in his life, Kim’s greatest joy and proudest moments stemmed from his family: Krystn, Elise, Per, and Christian. Family ski trips or coaching soccer, times spent with all the family or one on one with each his children, were the moments he treasured most. Kim was devoted to helping his children succeed, and with that his legacy will live on.
During the last months of Kim’s life, Krystn was unfailingly at his side. She managed all that was handed to her with courage, grace and strength. Kim’s great love for Krystn gave her the ability to care for him even in the hardest of days.
Kim is survived by his mother, Elsa Nesselquist of Nesbyen, Norway; his wife, Krystn (Soltau), daughter Elise (Nesselquist) Brueske and son-in-law Alex Brueske, sons Per Alexander Nesselquist and Christian Johannes Nesselquist; his brother, Petter Nasselquist of Oslo, Norway, and by sisters-in-law, brother-in-law, aunts, uncles, cousins, nieces and nephews both in the United States and Norway. Kim was preceded in death by his father Per Erik Hansen.
A funeral service will be held at the Nordic Museum in Ballard, Washington. At 4 p.m. Dec. 17, 2018.
In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the following:
University of Washington Consul Kim Nesselquist Norwegian-American Community Endowed Fund: giving.uw.edu/norame
Or Nordic Museum 2655 NW Market St. Seattle, WA 98107: https://nordicmuseum.org/donate
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