Gary R. Kilpatric ’65

25+ years

Gary R. Kilpatric says Berkeley is and always will be part of his identity. “Cal shaped my life in so many ways,” Gary reflects.

Photo of Kilpatric family
Berkeley helped shape Gary’s life trajectory

Without question, the biggest way Berkeley shaped Gary’s life trajectory was meeting his partner in life, his wife, Mary (’66). She had been dating one of his fraternity brothers when they first met. After locking eyes again at a Cal football game and then attending a street dance later, the two were inseparable. Mary would later receive her teaching certificate from Cal in 1968.

“Mary was so spontaneous and so am I,” Gary says. “We were a perfect match.”

Upon Gary’s return from his service in Vietnam, Gary and Mary embarked on a sailing adventure for five months, sailing from the Canary Islands to Brazil. When they returned, Mary taught elementary school in San Francisco while Gary attended law school at UC Law San Francisco.

Gary served as deputy district attorney for Contra Costa County, California before the couple moved to Santa Fe, New Mexico in the early 1970’s. Gary has been both a commercial lawyer and a litigator for many corporate clients and engaged in an extensive lobbying practice before the New Mexico legislature, lobbying the passage, defeat, or amendment of major legislation.

The couple have two children and have traveled all over the world, hiking, sailing, skiing, and scuba diving. The couple went on several trips arranged by Cal faculty members. Mary passed away in 2019. Currently, Gary is working on his memoir.

“It’s bringing a lot of emotion to the surface,” Gary says. “One of the emotions is gratitude.”

This immense gratitude and the doors of opportunity his Berkeley journey opened to him are two main reasons Gary continues to be Berkeley Loyal.

“I give because Cal helped me be more than what I thought I could be.”