EducationBA, University of California, Berkeley
MA, Contemplative Psychology, Naropa University
Pamela Krasney, Naropa alumna and longtime member of the Naropa Board of Trustees, passed away on June 9. Pamela was deeply committed to Naropa and our mission. She was incredibly generous to both Naropa and to a number of philanthropic causes, and she generously offered her spirit, her passion, and her resources for decades. The entire Naropa community mourns her passing.
Pamela Krasney was an innovative, catalytic and deeply authentic social activist for more than half a century, starting with her participation in the Free Speech Movement at the University of California, Berkeley, where she was an art history major in the mid-nineteen-sixties. Moving to San Francisco after graduation, she became involved with the San Francisco Mime Troupe and the Diggers, a community arts and action group that provided free street theater, food, medical care, transport, and temporary housing in the Haight-Ashbury neighborhood and opened “Free Stores” that gave away their stock.
Pamela became a Tibetan Buddhist practitioner in 1974 and lived for the next decade in Boulder, Colorado, where she was a student of Chogyam Trungpa, and worked for and attended Naropa Institute (now Naropa University), earning an MA in Contemplative Psychology in 1983 and serving on Naropa’s board for the past thirty years, much of that time as Development Chair.
After returning to California and marrying in 1984, Pamela was active in the HIV/AIDS community, initially as a caregiver and eventually as the Chair of the Marin AIDS Project. Since 1999, when she befriended and began to work with Jarvis Masters, a wrongly-convicted Death Row inmate at San Quentin State Prison, Pamela has been a fervent criminal justice and anti-death penalty advocate. She is active in Human Rights Watch, was on the board of Death Penalty Focus for many years and currently serves as a director of the Prison Mindfulness Institute, headquartered in Providence, Rhode Island and a member of the Advisory Council for Dalai Lama Fellows, based in San Francisco.
She is survived by her husband Marty in Sausalito, California and two children and
two grandchildren, as well as more best friends than anyone else.
Naropa University was honored to have Pamela's service, dedication, and generosity.