“I found her to be very disciplined, very focused, a workaholic — but I use that term in the positive sense,” Gotwalt said. “She ate and slept politics, from time she started at the grassroots of her career. She stayed up until all hours writing a speech until it was the way she thought it should be.”
While Gotwalt said she knew Thatcher was in failing health, she still was surprised to learn of her death Monday morning. “Retirement was never in her vocabulary,” Gotwalt said, adding she had continued to travel, speak and work for many years.
Thatcher never called on the line Gotwalt answered as receptionist. “But I did receive some interesting calls on that line – when you picked up you never knew who was going to be on the line,” she said. “Joan Rivers called frequently,” Gotwalt said, since she was, surprisingly, a contributor to the foundation. “But the most interesting was the Aga Khan,” she said, referring to the leader of Ismaili Muslims.