News Briefs

29 October 2008

L&S divisional dean Jon Gjerde dies at 55

Jon Gjerde, dean of the Division of Social Sciences in the College of Letters and Science, died unexpectedly Sunday evening in his home in Albany. He was 55.

Gjerde, the Alexander F. and May T. Morrison Professor of American History and American Citizenship, joined the Berkeley faculty in 1985 and was named dean of social sciences in 2007.

A full obituary and memorial service details will appear in next week’s Berkeleyan.

Haas International Award nominations sought

Nominations are being accepted for the 2008 Walter A. Haas International Award; the deadline is Saturday, Nov. 30. The award honors a Berkeley alumnus (anyone who attended the campus for a minimum of two semesters or three quarters) who is a native, citizen, and resident of a nation other than the United States and who has a distinguished record of service to his or her country. It includes a cash prize of $15,000, an engraved medallion, and travel expenses for the recipient to attend the award presentation.

Visit for more information or a nomination form, or contact Helena Weiss-Duman (643-6493).

Construction begins for Berkeley Law’s South Addition

Fences on the south side of the School of Law complex have been installed in preparation for construction that is scheduled to begin with excavation in late November. The new South Addition will create a home for the law library in two stories of underground space and add a new classroom, café, and study space at ground level, as well as a renovated courtyard and a rooftop garden. Construction is scheduled to be complete in Spring 2011.

The sidewalk on the north side of Bancroft Way and the adjacent parking lane will be closed for the duration of construction. The area being used for construction staging and temporary trailers on the west side of the law complex will be restored once the project is complete. Emergency-vehicle access for the area will move to a ramp near the west side of the plaza, closer to Kroeber Hall.

Berkeley Law has more information about the South Addition project, in addition to other renovations and improvements that have been under way since spring.

Nov. 12 conference to highlight Native American Heritage Month

The Native American Staff Council will hold its first Diversity Conference and Career Resource Fair on Wednesday, Nov. 12, from 8:30 a.m. to 6:30 p.m. in the Chevron Auditorium at
International House.

In addition to representing a contribution to Native American Heritage Month, the conference is one of 10 projects funded as part of the Berkeley Initiative for Leadership on Diversity (BILD), launched in 2006 to serve as a catalyst for engaging the campus community in innovative approaches and partnerships that advance staff diversity and foster an inclusive workplace environment. Gibor Basri, vice chancellor for equity and inclusion, will welcome conference attendees; keynote speakers for the day are Native American activists Billy Mills at 10 a.m. and Winona LaDuke at 4:40 p.m.

Pre-registration is urged by Wednesday, Oct. 29. Organizers expect to post the full conference schedule shortly. For information, or to register after Oct. 29, contact Jackie Blossom-Garcia (642-8241).

UC reaches contract agreement with police

The University of California has reached an agreement with the Federated University Police Officers Association union on a new employment contract for the UC system’s more than 200 police officers.

The new contract provides for general salary increases to be effective Oct. 1, ranging in size from 2 to 8 percent, depending upon the campus and local market conditions. The contract also provides UC police officers the same health and retirement benefits as other UC employees.

Pending ratification by union members, the new comprehensive contract will be in effect until Sept. 30, 2011.

For the record . . .

Last week’s story on doctoral student Tim Bean’s kangaroo-rat research on California’s Carrizo Plain was reprinted from the October issue of eGrad, the monthly newsletter of the Graduate Division.