In Memory

Mr. Gerald Hayward (Social Studies, Basketball Coach)


Gerald C. Hayward
1938 - 2021

Gerald C. "Jerry" Hayward achieved his dreams by enabling countless Californians to achieve their own. A tireless fighter for affordable, accessible higher education, he successfully guided the nation's largest postsecondary education system, the California Community Colleges, through one of its most challenging periods. 
Jerry's celebrated career was founded on an AA degree from College of the Sequoias, exemplifying the opportunity he sought to create for others. Even before college, his sense of humor and unassuming leadership style had won him many allies and friends, as well as the student body presidency of Exeter High School.
Jerry went on to U.C. Berkeley, where he majored in political science, minored in English, and, at a party once, playfully took the name tag of Linda Malmstrom, a physical education major from San Francisco. She responded in 1962 by taking his last name.
The newlyweds moved to Fairfield, where Jerry taught American government and history while coaching freshman basketball at Armijo High School—and earning a master's in education administration from S.F. State. The busy couple welcomed a daughter, Robin, in 1967, and a son, David, in 1970. The family soon moved to Sacramento, where Jerry began working for the state senate as an aide.
Under the guidance of his revered mentor Senator Al Rodda, Jerry soon became chief consultant to the state senate's education and finance committees. By the end of the decade, his efforts as legislative advocate for community colleges had helped drive the passage of landmark school finance reform legislation.
Jerry's achievements in the '70s led to his appointment, in January 1980, as chancellor of the California Community Colleges. Over the next five years—a time of fiscal cutbacks and eroding confidence in government—Jerry fought for adequate funding while spearheading reform of the entire community college system. The enduring impact of his work is still celebrated each year in the form of the Gerald C. Hayward Award for Excellence in Education. 
The opportunities he championed weren't limited to collegiate education. Jerry's influence also lives on in the continuing work of Policy Analysis for California Education (PACE), the research center he cofounded with Michael Kirst and James Guthrie in 1982. In the late '80s and the '90s, Jerry helped lead the National Center for Research in Vocational Education. 
He remained a vital resource and advisor into the 2000s, both as a founding partner of the consulting firm Management, Analysis and Planning, and on the boards of EdSource, AVID, and the Center for the Future of Teaching and Learning.
None of this work interfered with his career as grandfather of the highest order, which began with the arrival of Alex in 1997 and escalated with those of Charlie, Willie, and Teo. Just as he'd done as a son, brother, husband, father, and friend, Jerry embraced the role from a place of unconditional love, a habit traceable to Geraldine, the single mother who raised him.
Jerry's greatest challenge arose in 2005 with a diagnosis of Parkinson's disease. The 16 years that followed, though increasingly difficult, also proved that his gracious spirit—and his impeccable comic timing—were irreducible. As a member of Rock Steady Boxing, a team dedicated to fighting back against the disease, "Hurricane" Hayward developed a fearsome right hand while leaning more heavily than ever on Linda, his resilient cornerwoman.
Jerry Hayward passed away peacefully at home on September 11 at the age of 83, leaving behind a legacy of love and laughter for those who knew him, and of hope and possibility for millions who didn't. 
Preceded in death by father Ferrel and mother Geraldine, Jerry is survived by Linda, his wife of 59 years, daughter Robin Rounaghi (Ali), son David (Itzel), four grandsons, brothers Robby and Steve, sister Fereleen Schultz, and sister-in-law Karen Eckhart.
A memorial service is planned for the afternoon of Saturday, October 9 in Sacramento. For details, contact Donations may be made to Rock Steady Boxing ( or the Parkinson Association of Northern California (