Campuses grieve the loss of Trustee Jay


Trustee William (Bill) Jay, an integral part of the South Orange County Community College District, passed away this week. (courtesy SOCCCD)

South Orange County Community College District announced today that Trustee Dr. William (Bill) Jay, 79, who has long been involved in the Saddleback and Irvine Valley colleges, has passed away.

Jay’s dedication to Saddleback College has been life long and he was committed to providing expanded academic opportunities for college students young and old.

“All of the tributes you are hearing about him are accurate,” Bill Kelly, a long-time friend and colleague since 1975, said. “He had a special place in his heart for Saddleback College and our district. One of the qualities I always appreciated about him was that he had a ‘can do’ approach to everything. He was always willing to try new ideas if it could serve more students.”

In addition to having served as a SOCCCD Trustee since 2004, Jay held many leadership rolls at Saddleback College between 1974-1999, including Saddleback College President, Dean of Instruction, and Professor of Mathematics.

Jay was also largely responsible for developing off-campus programs for students to provide greater access to classes, the beginning of the Irvine Valley campus.

Jay additionally served as Vice Chancellor of Administrative Services and Human Resources for the District from 1994-1999. Even after retirement Jay never stopped caring about student education, and became as a trustee in 2004.

Jay is survived by his wife Bobbie, children, Jennifer Cordon and Jeffrey Jay, five grandchildren, his sister, Judy George, and his mother, Julia Waterman Jay.

In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that Bill’s legacy be memorialized through the establishment of a Dr. William “Bill” Jay Memorial Scholarship at the Saddleback College Foundation.

A memorial service will be held Friday, March 20 at 2:00 p.m. in the McKinney Theater at Saddleback College.