July 2, 2008


Dear Colleagues:
I am writing to you with a heavy heart, to share the sad news that Mary Cheadle passed away on Monday, June 30.

Many of you knew Mary well. She was a beloved member of our UC Santa Barbara family for more than four decades, and we will miss her deeply.

Mary came to this campus in 1962 with her husband, Vernon Cheadle, who served with such tremendous distinction as UC Santa Barbara’s second chancellor until 1977. Together they led this campus with vision and tireless dedication at an early stage in its development. With the entire campus community, they planted the seeds for the wonderful blossoming of UC Santa Barbara that we all enjoy today. Mary and Vernon also did so much to encourage community involvement and private support for this campus. Their legacy includes the establishment of The UC Santa Barbara Foundation and the Chancellor’s Council.

Even after Vernon’s retirement, Mary and Vernon’s devotion to UC Santa Barbara continued unabated. They generously gave their time and financial support to so many areas on our campus. For Mary, our Davidson Library (home to the Mary Cheadle Conference Room), University Art Museum, and Vernon and Mary Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration were especially close to her heart.

In 1994, Mary created the Mary Low Cheadle Endowment for Special Collections, to assist our library with important acquisitions. After Vernon passed away in 1995, she made many wonderful gifts to our university in his memory, including the creation of endowments for the University Art Museum, for vocal music, for scholarships for outstanding student-athletes in track, and for maintenance of the Cheadle collections at the Cheadle Center for Biodiversity and Ecological Restoration, as well the establishment of an unrestricted Vernon I. and Mary Low Cheadle Endowment for University Excellence. The Cheadle family is a member of UC Santa Barbara’s Lancaster Society.

Mary was a Foundation Board Trustee from 1996 to 2000. She was also a dedicated member of our Friends of the Library Board, University Art Museum Council, History Associates, Art Affiliates (who named her an Honorary Life Director), Faculty Women’s Club, and Alumna Association. She was named an Honorary Alumna in 1990.

For those who would like to express condolences to the family, messages can be sent in care of her son, Bill, at the following address:

Dr. William G. Cheadle
414 Mockingbird Hill Road
Louisville, KY 40207

Mary is also survived by her daughter-in-law, Mary, and her grandsons, Jack and Joey. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that memorial contributions be made to the Davidson Library or to the Vernon and Mary Cheadle Center for Biodiversity.

We will never forget Mary’s care for this campus. She touched so many lives with her kindness and wisdom, her inspirational leadership, and her visionary generosity. In countless ways, the Cheadle family has helped make UC Santa Barbara what it is today - not just a world-class research university, but also a community, and a campus family.


Henry T. Yang