Person of Shelburne – Linda Retchin


Born and raised in Babylon, N.Y., south of Fire Island, Linda Retchin is the middle child of three sisters. Older sister Judy is a superior court judge and her younger sibling Nancy is a Shakespearean actress and artist in New York City. Retchin has been a Vermonter for 27 years and her extended family now fosters a love for Shelburne as well. “They love spending holidays with us in Vermont,” she said.

Out of high school, Retchin attended Kent State University but finished her degree at Howard University to become a registered dental hygienist (R.D.H.).

Her first job took her far from home but closer to adventure. For two years, she worked with a Hungarian dentist in Bern, Switzerland. “The first thing I did was buy a rail pass and a Swiss Army knife. I sampled chocolate and cheese all over Europe,” Retchin mooned.

Retchin came back to the U.S. to settle in West Dover. Friends recommended the Burlington area. “I lived in Winooski. I loved it.” Soon she met her now husband Jeff Solomon at a wine and cheese tasting on Cheese Factory Road. “We dated a year before we got married in May at the Woolen Mill. Our reception was at Pauline’s. I love him even more now.” After they tied the knot, the pair moved to Shelburne. They’ve long past settled in, having raised their children, now young adults. Their daughter Hannah graduated from the University of Vermont and moved to Denver, Colo. Their son Ian currently attends UVM.

Now Retchin flexes her talent as a per diem dental hygienist. Additionally, she graces the Northeast Regional Board of Dental Examiner (ADLEX) for 13 years where she examines graduating students from dental schools.

And she loves to keep busy. A public member of the Board of Real Estate Appraisers, Vermont City Marathon volunteer, committee member of the Vermont Professional Colleague Assistance Program, paddler with the Green Mountain Girls of Dragonheart (DHVT), Temple Sinai volunteer, co-coordinator of the Hands on Nature program from the Shelburne Community School, and JV field hockey official, Retchin continues. On Christmas, you can catch her delivering meals to the infirmed elderly but on any given day, she’s collecting litter around town – perhaps on her way to host a breakfast club of fellow mothers or to teach an exercise group at Shelburne Farms. Retchin’s tireless involvement sprouts from her loyalty to her community. Modesty is another of Retchin’s strong suits. “My husband’s the breadwinner and I get to just play,” she explained.

Closest to her heart is her involvement with DHVT. She paddles twice per week and is currently training for a competition in Ravenna, Italy. Last year the team competed in Hong Kong.

Interests and hobbies: Mah Jongg, baking, and exercise: yoga, snowshoeing, walking, running – she’s participated in over 50 Ks! – paddling, and fishing.

Music: “My first concert was Janis Joplin at Forest Hills. Then I saw Santana in Filmore East. I still have all of my old albums.”

Favorite food: Pho and red licorice

Favorite movie: Shawshank Redemption

Favorite Shelburne haunt: Shelburne Farms’ Love Tree Hill – where Retchin teaches her exercise class two times a week. She and her family also love getting facials from Krystina at European Touch Spa.

Bucket List: To travel and go to as many DHVT world tournaments as possible. “The Green Mountain Girls are an incredible group of paddlers,” Retchin gloated. She’d also like to meet the Dalai Lama and live to see grandchildren.

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