An empowering decision

Bev Crair

Bev Crair

Bev Crair’s mother was her best friend.

“My mother,” said Crair, “taught me to live a full and honest life.”

Now, Crair (Stevenson ’83, computer science and mathematics) is sustaining her mother’s name, and helping gay, lesbian, bisexual, and transgender youth, with a $50,000 pledge establishing the Ruth Bloch Crair Memorial Scholarship, an endowed fund for students at the UC Santa Cruz Lionel Cantú Queer Center.

Crair, vice president of Intel Corporation’s storage group, decided, along with her wife, Lisa, to name the chair after Ruth Bloch Crair, in part because she has such vivid memories of coming out to her mother.

When Crair told her mother she was a lesbian, “She was pretty upset. Her concern was, ‘You will live a hard life,'” said Crair. “But I remember telling her at the time that I couldn’t not come out because I wouldn’t be living the Jewish values that she and my father taught me. I knew that I had to be my full, authentic self.”

That difficult but ultimately empowering conversation was on her mind when she decided to give to an on-campus organization that provides an open, safe, inclusive, intercultural space, promoting education about all genders and sexualities.

Crair thought it was fitting to use the endowment to help new generations of students speak their own truth. She also thought it was a beautiful way to honor her mother, who died in 2004. Crair, who is Jewish, referred to a saying associated with Judaism: “May their memory be a blessing.”

“This way, it lets her memory be a blessing for a lot more people than just her family,” Crair said.

—by Dan White

Recent gifts to the Campaign for UC Santa Cruz

A boost for stellar students

A gift of $400,000 from retired UC Santa Cruz astronomy researcher Arnold Klemola establishes the James Keeler Fund for Excellence in Astronomy and Astrophysics to support graduate student research.

Diversifying environmental conservation

A $2 million gift establishes the Doris Duke Conservation Scholars Program. Funded by the Doris Duke Charitable Foundation, the program is designed to increase diversity in environmental conservation (see page 4).

A crowd funds Smith Society scholarships

Using the platform, friends of the Smith Renaissance Society raised $39,400 from 168 donors in 30 days, funding scholarships for students who lack traditional family support systems.
These and all gifts count toward the Campaign for UC Santa Cruz.

The Campaign for UC Santa Cruz

This fundraising effort supports excellence across the university through increased private investment in the people and ideas shaping the future. It is bringing critical new resources to each academic division, the library, and to signature initiatives in the student experience, genomics, coastal sustainability, data science, and at the intersection of the arts and sciences.

Learn more:

Questions? Contact Campaign Director Rebecca Levy at or (831) 459-1365.

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