Remembering Tom Hayden: A Life of Activism and Radical Reform

Thursday Feb 09 2017   6:00 PM
Mechanic's Institute  57 Post Street, San Francisco, CA  map

Tom Hayden, the principal author in 1962 of the founding manifesto of Students for a Democratic Society, the Port Huron Statement, led an extraordinary life of organizing, writing, and political reform. He put himself on the line during Mississippi Summer in 1964, was a principal opponent of the Vietnam War, a defendant in the Chicago Seven trial, and served nearly 20 years in the California legislature. His death in Santa Monica at age 76 in October 2016 offers an occasion to think more deeply about the prospects of change and making history in America, past, present, and future. Moderated by Steve Wasserman, Executive Director of Heyday, with Honorable Mayor Willie Brown, Clara Bingham, author of Witness to the Revolution, and “Yippie Girl” Judy Gumbo Albert.

Free for members, $15 for non-members.

Steve WassermanSteve Wasserman, raised in Berkeley and a graduate of Cal, is Heyday’s publisher and executive director. He is a former editor-at-large for Yale University Press and editorial director of Times Books/Random House and publisher of Hill & Wang and The Noonday Press at Farrar, Straus & Giroux. He has worked with many authors and published numerous books, including, most recently, Greil Marcus’s The History of Rock ‘n’ Roll in Ten Songs, Martha Hodes’s Mourning Lincoln, David Thomson’s Why Acting Matters, and two posthumous volumes of the late critic Ralph J. Gleason’s musical and political writings. A founder of the Los Angeles Institute for the Humanities at the University of Southern California, Wasserman was a principal architect of the Los Angeles Times Festival of Books during the nine years he served as editor of the Los Angeles Times Book Review (1996–2005). He began his career as an assistant editor to Warren Hinckle at Francis Ford Coppola’s City Magazine of San Francisco and went on to become deputy editor of the Sunday Opinion section and Op-Ed Page of the Los Angeles Times (1978–1983) before becoming editor in chief of New Republic Books, based in Washington, D.C., and New York. He was also a partner in Kneerim & Williams, a Boston-based literary agency, and represented, among others, Robert Scheer, Christopher Hitchens, David Thomson, Linda Ronstadt, and Placido Domingo. He has written for many publications, including The Village Voice, Threepenny Review, The Nation, The New Republic, The American Conservative, The Progressive, Columbia Journalism Review, Los Angeles Times, and the (London) Times Literary Supplement.