Announcing the Passing of Life Trustee Bradford “Brad” Blaine

Life Trustee and Emeritus Professor of History Bradford “Brad” Blaine passed away on April 14, 2020. Brad’s kindness and unwavering support of the College will be remembered by those he touched during his association with Scripps, which spanned more than 50 years.

Born in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, to Bradford B. and Elsie G. Lane, his biological father died when he was two years old, and he was subsequently adopted by his mother’s second husband, Arch C. Blaine.

Professor Blaine received his BA and MA in medieval history at Stanford University before attending the University of California, Los Angeles, for his PhD. At Stanford, he met the love of his life, Mary Anne Chapman, and they were married in 1954.

Brad was a veritable institution at Scripps College, eventually becoming the Wilbur Kitchener Jordan Professor of European Civilization. Passionate in his own field as a medievalist, he actively supported and promoted the idea of a broad humanities-based education. He held leadership positions in faculty governance, focusing on academic matters as a member and chair of the Faculty Executive Committee as well as a member of earlier committees on academic policy. He particularly supported young faculty in their teaching and research, encouraging them to be involved in the wide range of intellectual opportunities at Scripps.

“Brad’s professional life at Scripps College provided an incredible impact on the lives and minds of thousands of students, colleagues, and trustees, not only with facts, information, and insights into history and the humanities, but also simply in the life he modeled as an intelligent, thoughtful, caring person,” recalls Michael Lamkin, former dean of faculty and emeritus professor of music.

Julia Liss, Scripps College professor of history and Mary W. Johnson and J. Stanley Johnson Professor of Humanities, shares, “Brad’s deep love of Scripps College, its educational mission—especially the humanities program—and especially the students, was evident from the moment I arrived on campus. It’s hard for me to believe he retired in 1998, because he remained an active and engaged member of our community for so long after. He connected the history of Scripps to the present through his continuing dedication to the College.”

Brad brought great expertise and understanding to his time on the College’s Board of Trustees through his insights into issues facing Scripps, gleaned from his 35 years as a distinguished member of the Scripps faculty. He was a member of the Executive and Finance Committees and served as vice chair and co-chair of the Educational Policy Committee. In this latter capacity, he used his wealth of knowledge and thoughtful perspective on academic affairs to skillfully guide committee discussions to ensure that the educational program remained consistent with the College’s mission.

Brad and his wife, Mary Anne, have been extraordinarily generous supporters of Scripps. Many important undertakings of the College have received encouragement and support through their gifts. They established the Bradford and Mary Anne Blaine Faculty Lecture series, in honor of the College’s 75th anniversary. They also endowed the Bradford and Mary Anne Blaine Scholarship in Early European History and Culture, established in 2006 to assist a student with financial need who is pursuing a major or minor in aspects of early European history and culture, or who shows academic interest in these areas.

As a prominent and longtime resident of the Claremont community, he served as an important Board liaison to the city. Brad also served on the boards of Claremont Heritage, the Rancho Santa Ana Botanic Garden, and Mount San Antonio Gardens. He was ordained as a deacon, and eventually an elder, at Claremont Presbyterian Church. He was also a member of Phi Alpha Theta, the national honor society in history.

A memorial service will be held at Scripps College at a future date. Gifts in memory of Professor Blaine may be made to Scripps College, directed to the Bradford and Mary Anne Blaine Scholarship in Early European History and Culture or the Bradford and Mary Anne Blaine Faculty Lecture Series, at

Professor Blaine is survived by his beloved wife, Mary Anne; his sons, Brad Jr. (Belinda) and Andrew (Leigh); and his granddaughters Megan, Ellen, and Sarah.