Karen was born on July 30, 1961, in Tucson Arizona. She was an outgoing and naturally curious child. From a young age she was interested in art and loved animals. As the oldest of three children, she was a fierce big sister and very protective of her younger sister and brother.
Karen graduated from George C. Marshall High School in Fairfax, Virginia in 1979. She moved with her family immediately after graduation to Palo Alto, California. With Silicon Valley in its early years, Karen held several positions at IBM, Motorola, and Four-Phase Systems before landing at Tandem Computers.
Karen had an almost 40-year career supporting the NonStop product line. She started in Operations working in the computer room, was the Build and Release engineer for the Guardian Operating System (and was known as “The Guardian Angel”), became a director managing Build and Release of the NonStop stack and then moved into Product Management. Karen was passionate about the work she did, she believed strongly in and evangelized the NonStop product and built strong and lasting relationships along the way.
Outside of work Karen was very creative, she wrote poetry, liked to watercolor paint, and enjoyed singing with her husband and friends in garage band jams. Karen loved her cats and the Maine Coon breed; she had several Maine Coons over the years. Karen was also very proud of her Italian heritage and loved to travel to Italy to immerse herself in the culture. Venice was her favorite city, and she went as often as she could.
Karen met her husband Bill in 1999 and they were married in September of 2002. Karen and Bill shared a love of animals, traveling, and making music together. Bill was the love of Karen’s life, patient, kind, and sensitive Bill has been Karen’s constant companion and support for over 20 years.
Karen is survived by her husband, Bill Griffith, her stepson, Zander Griffith, her mother, Vera Mottino, her sister, Leslie Colasanti (spouse Peter Colasanti, nephew Tanner Colasanti), her brother, Steve Copeland (spouse Stephanie Copeland, niece Taylor Copeland), her sister-in-law, Susan Chavarría (spouse Saúl, niece Jane Chavarría, niece Natalia Chavarría), and her sister-in-law Arlene Griffith (spouse Vito DeTorre).