Gloria Liggett
Gloria Liggett

Gloria Liggett, 84, passed away on April 25, 2023, in Santa Barbara after a brief illness. She was born Gloria Del Castillo on June 4, 1938, the only child  of Joseph Del Castillo and Elizabeth Regan in Alhambra, California. Through her father, she identified as Tongva/Gabriella.

Gloria married John Liggett in 1962 and had two children Lissa and Jordan. Later, while teaching in Los Angeles in the mid-1980s, she adopted two more children Tim and Autry, whom she raised as a single parent.

With a BA in education (San Jose State College, 1960) and MA in education (UCSB, 1983), she taught elementary school or art since 1960, in Istanbul, Turkey; Alhambra, California; and at Adams, Washington, Harding and other schools in Santa Barbara. She was also an adjunct faculty in education at Antioch University.

Gloria was widely loved and respected as an activist, artist, and builder of community. She was one of the founders of Open Alternative School.

Each year, she gathered young people do chalk art at I Madonnari and to participate in Summer Solstice. Gloria was active in the Unitarian Church, Wilderness Youth Project, and Ethnic Studies Now! Santa Barbara.

She relished working with the Fund for Santa Barbara’s grant making committee to allot $10,000 grants to community organizations. We have an opportunity to continue her work through the newly established Gloria Liggett Community Justice Fund, administered by the Fund for Santa Barbara. 

Gloria is survived by her four children, six grandchildren, and many loving friends, young and old.

A memorial service will be held at 4 p.m. Sunday, June 11 at Tucker’s Grove park.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that contributions be sent to the Fund for Santa Barbara. Donations can be made at https://fundforsantabarbara.org/donate/ (write in the note section: Gloria Liggett Fund) or as a check made payable to the “Fund for Santa Barbara” (memo: Gloria Liggett Fund) and sent to PO Box 90710, Santa Barbara, CA 93190-0710.