Obituary: Carolyn Leacock, Community Activist and Environmentalist


Carolyn Leacock was born April 6, 1936, in England, to parents Enid and Montagu Slater. She died on March 20, in Santa Fe, New Mexico. Recently she had suffered several strokes and was being cared for by her daughter Rebecca. Carol, 87, passed away peacefully with her son Jonathan and daughter-in-law Kriste at her side.

She was a community activist who helped stop the “Freeway to the Sea” that was planned through the Santa Monica Mountains between Reseda and Pacific Palisades.

With her first husband Philip Leacock, she founded the Temescal Canyon Association (TCA) in 1972 to prevent a golf driving range going into Temescal Gateway Park.

Fellow TCA member Gil Dembo said, “For more than fifty years Carol was the face of the Temescal Canyon Association. She did everything: led hikes, lobbied for legislation in Sacramento and built new trails in the Santa Monica Mountains.  She knew most of the people in the California State Parks Department. She conducted weekly evening hikes in Santa Monica in the summer.

She and a small group of women became known as the “Glamazons” for their effort to landscape and preserve a park in lower Los Liones Canyon from a housing development.

Two fellow Glamazons, who when learned of Carol’s passing, wrote “Small in stature and quietly spoken Carol Leacock made contributions to our community and beyond that stand as tall as the Santa Monica Mountains.

“During her many years serving as President of the Temescal Canyon Association and its Hike Leader, Carol helped preserve green space and then led many hundreds of people on hikes to expose them to the beauty and healing power of nature. Those of us who hike in the Santa Monica Mountains and especially Temescal Canyon and Los Liones Canyon should say, ‘Thank you, Carol.’

Carol and Philip, a film and television director, were married in 1959 and moved to California in the early 1960s. While raising her children, Jonathan and Rebecca, she earned a microbiology degree from USC in the early 1980s. Upon receiving her degree, she became a medical tech.

In addition to her environmental work, she ran numerous marathons. She was an active participant in the Will Rogers 5/10K Fourth of July Race. Carol, 81, placed third in the 5K age group in 2017 and a year later she was sixth.

After Phillip died in 1990 at age 72, she married the local bike shop owner, Ted Mackie in 1998. Together they continued to have an active lifestyle and stayed involved in the community and leading TCA.

Neighbors remembered the New Year’s Eve gatherings held at Carol’s Bienveneda home.

In 1994 she received a Golden Sparkplug award from the Pacific Palisades Community Council for her activism. In 1999, she was awarded Pacific Palisades Citizen of the Year for her efforts to preserve the beauty of Los Liones. She was congratulated with a certificate in her honor from the City of Los Angeles, which was signed by Councilmember Cindy Miscikowsky.

Her family remembers her as a bundle of energy. Someone who was always kind, gentle, non-judgmental, yet stoic and strong.

She was an inspiration to all who knew her.

Carol adopted her beloved dog, Lucy, from the Lange Foundation. Donations in Carol’s memory can be made to

She is survived by her children J.C. (Kriste) and Rebecca, and stepchildren Tim and Louisa – and Lucy, who is being taken care of by family.

A memorial service is planned for some time this fall in the Palisades, details will be forthcoming.

Three of the seven “Glamazons” Shirley Hagstrom, Carol Leacock and Norma Spack helped build Los Leones park.



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2 Responses to Obituary: Carolyn Leacock, Community Activist and Environmentalist

  1. K.C. Soll says:

    I was a member of the TCA community for several years, from the late ’80s until 2007. Those Tuesday evening summer hikes were a wonderful treat, sometimes led by Ted or Carol, and often “bringing up the back” was Bienveneda neighbor Maria Bane. I still have my TCA hiking sweatshirt. I miss ’em all so much.

    Warm regards to her family!


  2. Bronwen Sennish says:

    I never met her, but I often bless her as I pass the trail to Bienveneda while hiking Temescal. Thanking her and all the activists who stopped the freeway. Can you imagine our community without their efforts?

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