The CSA is saddened by the death of our founder and longtime chair, Jeffrey Lustig. Jeff died on June 14th in Berkeley, after waging his own battle against cancer. He was 69.
Jeff was a beloved professor of government at California State University, Sacramento, where he taught generations of students about the things he loved most–California, politics, and the quest for a better society. He was a prolific author and a passionate advocate, and for those who knew him best, a generous friend.
In the late 1980s Jeff brought together other thinkers to create the California Studies Association, an organization he chaired until 1999. The CSA became what it is today under Jeff’s vision and leadership. He began the annual conferences–lively venues for learning and networking for California’s future–as well as the regular California Studies Dinners which take place throughout the academic year.
Last April, as the CSA celebrated its 22nd annual conference, Jeff joined us for part of the morning. Though the cancer had obviously taken a physical toll on his body his warm smile and the sense of excitement in his eyes were all Jeff. While he will be sorely missed, especially as our state languishes in a sustained period of crisis, Jeff leaves behind a robust legacy embodied in the scores of people who continue to work for a better future.