By Christina Vargas
Esther Goldberg, 86, one of the first faculty members of Chabot Valley Campus — which later became Las Positas — died in her Castro Valley home on Sunday, Feb. 11, 2018.
Goldberg was accomplished in her fields of study. She attended the University of Wisconsin Madison, Columbia University in New York, Middlebury College Ohio and the University of California at Berkeley. She earned degrees in Political Science, Russian History, and US History.
Goldberg started as a part time instructor at the Chabot Valley Campus in 1965, becoming full-time in 1970. She taught American History and Political Science for both Chabot and Las Positas campuses.
She was a recipient of the Reed Buffington Award in 2001. This award represents professional excellence and is the highest honor given to a faculty member for outstanding achievement in the field of teaching.
Ian Jones, Opinions editor for the Express and former student of Goldberg’s remembers being slightly intimidated by her when he first took her class, but “she had a wry sense of humor, and as the semester went on, that intimidation faded quickly. In fact, she kind of took a shine to me – and she wasn’t an easy instructor. At the end of the semester, I came back for more. I remember working really hard in her political science class.”
Retiring shortly before PowerPoint took over class presentations, her lectures were usually illustrated by transparencies on overhead projectors of editorial cartoonist Thomas Nast’s drawings.