Prof. Judith Layzer, 1961-2015

May 29, 2015

To the members of the MIT community,
I write with the sad news that Professor Judith Layzer PhD '99 died Thursday, surrounded by her closest friends and family.
A brilliant scholar and teacher who was passionate about everything from the politics of environmental policy to the qualities of riveting prose, she was also a beloved member of many communities inside and outside MIT, from the world of competitive  ultimate frisbee, to Boston's creative writing community. And she was most at home outdoors, on the trails and seashores near Boston.
At MIT, Judy made her home all across the Institute, from political science, where she earned her doctorate, to MITEI, where she worked with colleagues to assess how public policy can best advance a sustainable human society, to her home department  of Urban Studies and Planning, which she helped lead as Associate Department Head. You can learn more about her life and work here.
In this difficult time, our hearts go out to Professor Layzer's family and her devoted community of students, colleagues and friends. Even a loss one anticipates can be a disorienting blow. At such times, the greatest comfort comes from the kindness of those around us. In addition, as always, the Institute's student support and mental health services are available to all members of the MIT community.
I join you in mourning Judy's loss and cherishing her memory. As plans emerge to commemorate her in our community, we will share them via MIT News.
In sympathy,
L. Rafael Reif