LLI Spotlight: Susan Hoffman, Director, OLLI, University of California, Berkeley 

By Peter Spiers

The Osher Lifelong Learning Institute at the University of California, Berkeley, was founded twice. Funded initially by the Osher Foundation in 2003, the OLLI’s first life lasted until 2005, when the University suspended operations to consider more thoroughly which lifelong learning model was best aligned with university objectives and principles, and how it could take a leadership role in lifelong learning. The two-year hiatus involved deliberations at the highest levels of university leadership and, as a result of this process, when relaunched in 2007 the OLLI had both a solid plan and the emotional investment of the University Academic Senate, the body that represents faculty in University governance. Membership grew to 600 in the first year of renewed operations, and has since grown to 2,000. Susan Hoffman has been OLLI at Berkeley’s director since 2007.