About Us

California is an editorially independent general-interest magazine and website. The mission of the publications is to cover the news, issues, discoveries, and people of the University of California, Berkeley, and keep alumni, scholars, researchers and thoughtful readers informed about the cutting-edge ideas and innovation emanating from the campus. The magazine is published four times a year and has a readership of 95,000. The website is updated with fresh news and can be accessed daily. Through news items, in-depth interviews, and features on topical issues, both publications report on the contemporary Berkeley campus with insight, style, and punch. Since 1897, California magazine has informed readers about one of the world’s greatest universities.

Editorial Office


California magazine
Cal Alumni Association
1 Alumni House
Berkeley, CA 94720-7520


Phone: 510.900.8247
Fax: 510.642.6100
Toll-free: 888.CAL.ALUM (888.225.2586)



Editorial Staff


Pat Joseph


A former syndicated newspaper columnist for Universal Press Syndicate and Ted Scripps Fellow in Environmental Reporting, Pat’s writing has appeared in The Atlantic, Scientific American, Smithsonian and the Virginia Quarterly Review.


Deputy Editor
Laura Smith


Laura Smith did not go to Cal, but wishes she had. Her writing has appeared in the New York Times, The Guardian, Slate, and others. She is the author of the nonfiction book, The Art of Vanishing (Penguin/Viking, 2018). There is a special place in her heart (and the accepted pitch folder in her inbox) for stories about badass women, history, literature, cultural criticism, and anything that manages to combine all of these things into one story.


Managing Editor
Esther Oh


After a stint in startup-land, Esther escaped into editorial. Previously, she worked at Communication Arts, where she discovered how the world intersects with design. She’s now discovering the world of UC Berkeley.


Senior Online Editor
Leah Worthington


After a year living amongst baboons in Kenya, Leah found her true calling as a journalist. Now she gets to explore the whole world, right from her ergonomic office chair. She has a special affinity for audio storytelling, loves grammar (really!), and is still holding out for a pitch about monkey behavior.


Design Director
Michiko Toki


A creative director and graphic designer for more than 20 years, Michi designs books and publications for numerous publishers, museums and galleries.


Design Associate
Anita Wong


Anita is a graphic designer who has worked at various publications, including Health, Mother Jones, Yoga Journal, and San Francisco Focus/KQED. She was also a senior designer at Student Affairs at the UC Office of the President. She is proud to be a UC Berkeley alumna.  



  • 2018 Best American Science and Nature Writing
  • 2015 CASE Circle of Excellence Silver Award, Best General Interest College or University Publication
  • 2014 American Illustration 33
  • 2013 CASE Circle of Excellence Gold Awards (two), Best Articles of the Year
  • 2012 CASE Circle of Excellence Gold Award, Best General Interest College or University Publication
  • 2012 Best American Science and Nature Writing
  • 2009 Best Special Interest Magazine, Western Publishing Association
  • 2008 Folio Gold Eddie Best Association Magazine