July 12, 2004
UCSC Foundation trustee and alumnus Eric Thomas died June 30 of a heart
attack at his home in Sacramento. He was 43.
A 1984 Oakes College graduate in economics, Thomas had been a member since 1997 of the Alumni Council, the governing board of the UCSC Alumni Association, and served as president from 2002 to 2003. Thomas was deputy executive director of the California State Treasurers Office.
Student scholarships were among Thomass many passions, and the family asked that a scholarship fund for a UCSC student be set up in his memory.
Contributions may be made to the UCSC Foundation, earmarked for the "Eric
Thomas Memorial Scholarship," and sent to the Annual Fund, University
of California, 1156 High Street, Santa Cruz, CA 95064. A fund on his children's
behalf has also been established. Donations may be directed to the Eric
Thomas Memorial Fund, in care of the Golden 1 Credit Union, 1109 L St.,
Sacramento, CA 95814.
Eric was a treasure and a good friend, and his passing leaves an
unimaginable void, said Kenneth Doctor, president of the Alumni
Association. His name ought never to be forgotten on our campus."
Thomas helped organize UCSCs first African American Alumni Reunion,
an all-class, all-college event in 2000. Also that year he cofounded Black
Escargot, the UCSC affinity group for African American alumni. He was
a tireless admissions outreach volunteer, career mentor for current students,
and fundraiser. Charismatic and outgoing, he was often tapped for the
role of master of ceremonies andgiven his love of musicmore
than once as deejay.
A memorial service was held July 10, at the Riverside Wesleyan Church, 6449 Riverside Blvd., in Sacramento. The family requested that donations be made to the memorial fund for his children in lieu of flowers.