The Jack Scott Papers contains personal and professional papers and memorabilia of Dr. Jack Scott, former President of Pasadena
City College (1987-1995), California State Assemblyman 44th District (1996-2000), California State Senator 21st District (2000-2008),
and Chancellor of California Community Colleges (2009-2012). The collection consists of correspondence, manuscripts, magazines
and journals, notes and drafts, pamphlets, photographs, awards (plaques, trophies and certificates), audio-visual materials,
and newspaper clippings.
Jack Alan Scott, 1933- is a former president of Pasadena City College, a former California State Assemblyman (D-La Crescenta),
and a former California State Senator.
Jack Scott was born in 1933 in Sweetwater, Texas. He is the son of Will Scott, a state legislator and later owner of a tractor
business, and his wife Ethelda.
Jack Scott attended Sweetwater High School in Sweetwater, Texas, where he was president of the student body. He met his future
wife, Lacreta Isbell, while they were students at Abilene Christian University and they were married in 1954. The couple had
five children: Sharon Mitchell, Sheila Head, Amy Shones (b. 1960), Greg (b. 1963) and Adam (1966-1993).
Jack received his bachelor's degree in Religion (1954) from Abilene Christian University. He later earned a Master of Divinity
degree from Yale University (1962) and a second Masters in History from Claremont Graduate School in 1967, as well as a Ph.D.
degree in American History from Claremont Graduate School (1970) and an honorary Ph.D. from Pepperdine University in 1991.
From 1962-1973 Scott served as Associate and later full Professor of History and Religion at Pepperdine University. From 1971-1973
he also served as Provost and Dean of the College’s Los Angeles Campus. From 1973-1978 he served as Academic Dean of Orange
Coast College, then from 1978-1987 as President of Cypress College. In 1982, Scott authored the book “An Annotated Edition
of Lectures on Moral Philosophy”, a work on the lectures of theologian John Witherspoon (1723-1794).
In 1987, Scott became President of Pasadena City College, serving in that position until 1995. During his tenure he created
a $100 million master plan to meet college needs through the 21st century, including a new library (completed in October 1993),
a 2000+ vehicle parking structure (completed January 1995), a new Child Development Center (completed April 1996), a Community
Education Center (completed May 1996), and a new physical education facility (completed 1999).
On October 22, 1993, Scott’s son Adam, a recent college graduate, was killed by a friend handling a weapon. This event was
a major impetus to Scott’s future legislative efforts to regulate gun manufacture and institute gun safety equipment and regulation.
In 1993 Scott co-founded the Coalition for a Non-Violent City, and served on the Board of Directors until 1998.
In 1996, Scott was elected a member of the California State Assembly (D-District 44). He was re-elected to a second term in
1998. While a member of the Assembly he acted as chair of the Education Budget Committee (1996-1998), the Insurance Committee
(1998-2000) and the Select Committee on Gun Violence. In 2000, Scott conducted hearings uncovering corruption which resulted
in the resignation of Insurance Commissioner Charles (“Chuck”) Quackenbush.
In 2000 Scott was elected to the California State Senate (D-District 21). He was re-elected to a second term in 2004. While
a member of the Senate he acted as chair of the Revenue and Taxation Committee (2000-2002), Budget Committee on Education
(2002-2004), Committee on Education (2004-2008), and the Joint Legislative Committee on Arts (2000-2008). He also served on
insurance, transportation, cost control, and banking and finance committees.
Legislation sponsored by Scott includes gift and loan restrictions on elected officials, prohibiting sex offenders from working
in schools, state regulation of gun manufacturers, streamlining of the child adoption process, regulation requiring full disclosure
by HMOs, and bills increasing teaching standards and making student loans tax deductible. During his service as a legislator
Scott received Legislator of the Year honors from many organizations.
In 2008, Scott became the 14th Chancellor of the California Community College system. After his retirement from this position
in 2012, he served as a Claremont University Scholar in Residence.
Throughout his lifetime Scott served numerous organizations, acting as Chairperson and member of the Board of Directors for
many. Notable among these appointments as his service as a member of the Pepperdine University Board of Regents (1974-1975),
Chairman and Board of Directors of the California Heart Association (1981-1988), Chairman of the Western Association of Schools
and Colleges (WASC) Accreditation Committee for Community and Junior Colleges (1992-1994), member of Board of Trustees of
Pacific Oaks College (1995-2001), member of the Board of Directors of the Santa Monica Conservancy (2001-), and President
of the Association of California community College Administrators.