Jean Duncan-Clark Tomlinson, 69, a volunteer in the office of D.C. Council member Polly Shackleton and a former employe of the Washington bureau of the New York Times, died at Suburban Hospital in Bethesda Saturday following a heart attack.

Mrs. Tomlinson, whose nickname was Gay, first came to Washington in 1941 when her husband, John D. Tomlinson, joined the State Department. She worked for the national office of the American Red Cross. From 1943 to 1954, she worked in the library of the Times bureau in Washington.

She then accompanied her husband, a Foreign Service officer, to a series of overseas posts, including Lebanon, South Africa, the former Belgian Congo (now Zaire) and Morocco. She also lived in New York and Spain and returned to Washington in 1974.

In addition to working as a volunteer in council member Shackleton's office, she was a member of the Women's National Democratic Club and served on several of its committees. She was a supporter of UNICEF and other organizations.

Mrs. Tomlinson was born in Toronto, Canada. She grew up in Wilmette, Ill., and graduated from the University of Chicago. She did social work at Hull House in Chicago and worked at the Peace Exhibit of the Chicago World's Fair. Following her marriage in 1936, she lived in Crawfordsville, Ind., where her husband was on the faculty of Wabash College.

In addition to her husband of the home in Washington, survivors include a daughter, Elizabeth Thesis of St. Louis, and three grandchildren.