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Diana N. Lockard: Leader in higher education, avid hiker

Leader in higher education, avid hiker, dear friend

Longtime Claremont resident, Diana Northup Lockard, died on March 22, following a long battle with Alzheimer’s disease. She was 95.

Born in Montclair, New Jersey, Ms. Lockard received her BA from Smith College, an MA from Columbia University, and a PhD in higher education from Claremont Graduate University. At Smith, a classmate remembers her as “a golden girl, admired by many, and a key player in her class.” 

Upon her graduation from Smith, in 1946, Ms. Lockard received the Southern Mountain Workshop Award, a fellowship that provided her room, board and a stipend to help support a folk arts program in the Appalachian mountain area of Berea, Kentucky. She became deeply engaged with folk dancing and music from that region.

Ms. Lockard then worked as a director of economic and community development for CARE, which took her to Vietnam in the 1950s. In 1960, after completing her master’s degree at Columbia, she came to Claremont on an Ellis Phillips Foundation fellowship to examine college administration at the Claremont Colleges.

For the next four years, she worked closely with Robert J. Bernard and Louis T. Benezet, presidents of CGU, and John Atherton, the founding president of Pitzer College. She was able to witness the early organization of that college before it opened its doors to students. From 1967 to 1977, Ms. Lockard served as Pitzer’s first dean of students, helping the college establish its first residential student programs.

Following her tenure at Pitzer, Ms. Lockard pursued a PhD in higher education at Claremont Graduate University, where she also served as assistant to the provost, Howard Brooks, and as director of admissions. Her dissertation, “Watershed Years: Transformation in the Community Colleges of California: 1945-1969,” prepared her well for her role as a trustee of Citrus College (1981-1999).

“Diana was a delightful and insightful graduate student whose interests were particularly timely in higher education,” said Jack Schuster, who chaired her dissertation committee.

As a member of the Citrus Community College District Board of Trustees, Ms. Lockard held all board offices, including three terms as board president. She was also an elected member of the California Community College Trustee Board, where she served as president.

Susan M. Keith, current vice president of the Citrus Community College Board of Trustees, remembers Ms. Lockard as “a smart woman who was ahead of her time and who served Claremont well.”

In the 1980s, Ms. Lockard also served as executive director of California Concerns, a newly formed organization of women in higher education who were seeking to promote women to leadership roles at Southern California colleges and universities.

In addition to her professional work, Ms. Lockard built many groups of close friends, some of whom shared her love of hiking and skiing. She hiked regularly in summers with the Sierra Club in the high country of Yosemite National Park, and for years she organized a group of friends who hiked together in the June Lake area of the eastern Sierra. She not only thrived on the physical aspect of hiking but on the natural beauty of her surroundings. One friend fondly remembers her watching water ouzels as they dipped into the fast moving streams around logs, feeding and fluttering their waterproof wings. At home, Ms. Lockard loved her cats.

Ms. Lockard was a longtime member of the Claremont Friends Meeting and regularly attended the California State Friends Pacific Yearly Meeting. Through these organizations she was able to work on social issues.

Ms. Lockard was predeceased by two husbands, Edward W. Malan and Curtis Lee, and by her younger brother, Arthur H. Lockard.

Donations in Ms. Lockard’s name may be made to Claremont Manor, where she had a caring home for more than 20 years. Donations should be addressed to Pacific Homes Foundation, with “cmrafe/Diana Lockard,” in the memo line, and sent to Claremont Manor, 650 Harrison Ave., Claremont 91711.

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