Edward Leibson

Edward Leibson, died December 1, 2013 at age 84, at his daughter’s home surrounded by family in St. Louis, Mo. He was a life-long advocate for civil rights and an ardent supporter of health care expansion. Born and raised in Detroit, he was educated in the public schools and went to college at Wayne State University, achieving a Doctorate of Education there in 1962.  He served at Fort Eustis in Virginia during the Korean conflict. A dedicated public servant, he began his career as an educator. He taught science in the Detroit Public Schools and pioneered the new medium of educational television by appearing as Mr. Science – a program broadcast in Detroit middle school classrooms. He served as principal of several elementary schools in the Detroit area in the 1960s then moved to the administration of a Detroit area community college. In 1965 he served as the director of the newly created Teacher Corps in Detroit working to train urban teachers and for desegregation. Always an able administrator, he became the “drug czar” of Wayne County, working to provide services to substance abusers and partnering with educational and charitable organizations to help those in need as the Director of the Department of Substance Abuse Services. In 1977 he moved to California to direct the newly created Health Systems Agency of Contra Costa and Alameda Counties. He served as a committee member for the 1980 California State Health Plan. He later joined Blue Cross of California. There he served as a contracts manager and worked directly with the CEO, developing and negotiating contracts with hospitals and medical groups throughout California and Nevada, resulting in reduced costs, smarter utilization and improved access. Following his retirement he dedicated himself to the care of his wife, Rosara, to perfecting his tennis and bridge games, and to reading the biographies of great Americans. He avidly followed the progression of the Affordable Care Act and the nomination process of future Fed chair Janet Yellen. He is survived by his six daughters (Andrea [Jack], Sherry [Robert], Karen [Randy], Carrie, Susan [Mike] and Joanne [Phillip] and twelve grandchildren (Jeremy, Joel, Jeffrey, Jacob, Caitlin, Alex, Lydia, Sam, Sara Mae, Noah, Nicolas and Adam.  Berger Memorial