Remembering Tim Wallace, who helped start the Claremont Canyon Conservancy

Tim Wallace, a UC Berkeley economist, served on the President’s Council of Economic Advisors, canoed the length of the Wisconsin and Mississippi rivers and co-founded the Claremont Canyon Conservancy.

Tim Wallace. Courtesy of Marye Jayne Wallace

Luther T. (Tim) Wallace, Aug. 16, 1928 – May 14, 2021

Tim Wallace passed away May 14, 2021, at home in Berkeley. At his side were his wife of 43 years, Marye Jayne, his daughter, Barbara, and his son Peter, both from his first marriage to Audrey Taylor.

Tim was a great guy. A remarkable man. So it has been said by many over the years. He could grab you with his eyes and hold you SO close. He had an extraordinary way with people. He wanted to learn about you, and would always find something interesting.

He had all the professional and academic credentials needed, and then some. He played football and performed Gilbert and Sullivan at North Shore Country Day School in Winnetka, Illinois, where he was raised; he graduated with honors in economics at Harvard; a master’s degree at Oregon State, and a doctoral degree at Purdue. Recruited by UC Berkeley’s Department of Agricultural and Resource Economics in 1963, he became an emeritus professor in October 1996. He spent 58 years total in Berkeley.

He served as Senior Staff Economist for Agriculture on the President’s Council of Economic Advisors at the White House, took sabbaticals to England, Scotland and Australia; served two years as Director of the California State Department of Food and Agriculture; spent a year in New Zealand on a Fulbright; made speeches and facilitated meetings all over the world; and wrote books and professional papers.

He was most proud of canoeing the entire length of the Wisconsin and Mississippi rivers during a summer in college; ranching and logging in Southern Oregon for six years straight out of Harvard (perhaps the most influential time of his life); sailing for six months with Marye Jayne and friends from Hong Kong to San Francisco via Japan and the Aleutian Islands; and mentoring students, some of whom he was in contact with until the end of his life. He loved to work with his hands — whether carving or building.

After the 1991 Oakland Hills Fire he and a few other concerned residents established the Claremont Canyon Conservancy, for which he served as president for most of the first 18 years. He was an active member of the Faculty Club, the Claremont Club, the Berkeley Breakfast Club, his men’s book club (founded in 1988), and several focus groups.

Tim Wallace. Courtesy of Marye Jayne Wallace

While at Purdue he purchased some property in the San Juan Islands, and it was his favorite place in the world for the past 55 years.

Tim was diagnosed with myelodysplastic syndromes in January. Two weeks before his death, he decided to come home from the hospital to be with Marye Jayne, stop treatments, and go into hospice care. His son and daughter were with them during this time to help with his care. He fought a good yet tiring fight.

He especially loved his family, Henry Island in the San Juans, sailing, working with rural people and his many friendships.
He believed that a handshake sealed the deal. He was smart, well-read, fun, funny, strong, caring, handsome, and the best friend anyone could ever have. He made everyone feel special. He was so loved by many, and will be greatly missed.

He is survived by his wife, Marye Jayne; daughter Barbara; son, Peter; granddaughter, Lucia; grandson, Kai; great-granddaughter, Elena; sister, Connie Caldwell; nieces Katie Fedor and Allison Caldwell; and several grandnieces and grandnephews. He was predeceased by his daughter Carey Wallace and niece Ann Tachovsky.

There will be a celebration of his life at a future time. If you wish to make a donation in his memory, please consider Claremont Canyon Conservancy, P.O.Box 5551, Berkeley, CA 94705.