I’m an author, activist, and recovering information technologist. I hail from Chicago, but my family relocated to the Bay Area in 1970 so I’ve spent most of my life in California. I graduated from UC Berkeley in 1982 with a degree in English, and began working on the campus in 1992. From 2007-2019 I supported research computing on the campus in the university’s Information Technology and Research, Teaching, and Learning departments. I currently write, organize as a grassroots activist, and study Tai Chi Chuan in Berkeley, California.
My short fiction has appeared in Garo, Stoneboat Literary Journal, Five Fingers Review and Christopher Street. Soon after my mom passed — far too early — I wrote an essay-length memoir piece that was anthologized in Our Mothers’ Spirits (HarperCollins, 1997). I share screenplay credit for an anti-apartheid movement documentary — you can find an excerpt of Soweto to Berkeley (Cinema Guild, 1988) on YouTube. I blog at One Finger Typing and on Daily Kos. Check out Goodreads for a taste of what I like to read.
My lifelong dedication to political activism took an academic turn when I worked in the 1990s for UC Berkeley’s Emma Goldman Papers Project, assembling source material for historian Paul Avrich’s acclaimed biography, Sasha and Emma, and testing Goldman’s recipe for blintzes while maintaining the project’s database. But I started decades before, in the fifth grade, by joining millions of Americans who wore a black armband for the Vietnam War Moratorium — a nationwide series of political actions in October, 1969 that Daniel Ellsberg credits with dissuading President Nixon from deploying tactical nuclear weapons against North Vietnam. I organized on the UC Berkeley campus in opposition to South African apartheid during the mid-1980s, and was subsequently inspired for life when I witnessed Nelson Mandela — during his visit to Oakland in 1990, only recently freed from a twenty-seven year imprisonment — acknowledge Berkeley’s movement for its contribution to South Africa’s liberation struggle. I also participated in the first successful political blockade of the Golden Gate Bridge in 1989 to protest inadequate response to the AIDS epidemic; helped lead the East Bay chapter of Queer Nation in the early ’90s; and joined in staging guerilla theater across the Bay Area in opposition to government-administered torture from Abu Ghraib to Guantanamo. Currently I’m active in the Bay Area around climate change issues.