News & Information

Tim Hodson, head of Center for California Studies, dies


Tim Hodson, Executive Director of the Center for California Studies at Sacramento State, died today. He was 61.

Hodson was named executive director in 1993. The Center has thrived under his leadership, with its Capital Fellows internship program ranked as one of the 10 best internships in the nation.

“Under Tim’s leadership, the Capital Fellows program has inspired students to tackle the responsibilities and challenges of public service,” says Sacramento State President Alexander Gonzalez. “Thanks to his dedication, Sacramento State’s alumni are leading the way for California in the highest levels of state government, and the program has been recognized as one of the top 10 internships in the entire nation.

“On a personal note, Tim was one of the first people I met when I came to Sacramento for this job – and I will be forever grateful. His extensive knowledge of the State Capitol and its politics has been incredibly valuable to the work we do at Sacramento State.”

A product of the California State University system, Hodson earned his B.A. degree from the Fullerton campus before receiving his M.A. and Ph.D. from the University of California at Santa Barbara. He was a full professor with Sacramento State’s Government and Public Policy and Administration departments.

“Tim’s dedication to Sac State and his vision for the Center for California Studies led to the creation of an outstanding educational opportunity for people from across the nation,” says Dean Charles Gossett, College of Social Sciences and Interdisciplinary Studies. “The Center’s contributions to student learning, faculty opportunities and service to the state all were advanced tremendously under his leadership.”

From 1978 to 1993, Hodson worked for the state Senate. He served as a consultant with the select committees on Political Reform and Government Regulation, as a principal consultant with the Senate Office of Research, and as the staff director of the Senate Elections and Reapportionment Committee.

Hodson was frequently quoted as an expert on California politics in newspapers including the Los Angeles Times, the Sacramento Bee, the New York Times and the London Times. He was also the author of various articles on California government and politics.

The Hodson family recommends that, in lieu of flowers, people consider a contribution to the Timothy A. Hodson Scholarship. Contributions will be used to help fellows with relocation assistance and professional needs during their fellowship. Contributions to the Timothy A. Hodson Scholarship can be made at Under “Gift Designation,” select the “Tim Hodson Scholarship.”

Memorial services for Hodson will take place at 1:30 p.m., Monday, Nov. 14 at the Cathedral of the Blessed Sacrament in Sacramento. For more information about the service, contact the Center for California Studies at (916) 278-6906 or

– Kim Nava