Hubert Locke (1934-2018)

Hubert Gaylord Locke was an author and authority on police and urban affairs as well as a longtime professor and administrator at the University of Washington.

A Detroit native, Locke was born there on April 30, 1934 to Willa L. Locke, a homemaker, and Hubert H. Locke, a factory worker at Ford Motor Company.  Locke received his bachelor’s degree in Latin and Greek from Wayne State University in 1955 and a bachelor’s in divinity from the University of Chicago in 1959.

For 12 years Locke was minister of the Church of Conant Gardens in Detroit.  He fully intended to continue his career as a clergyman but was sidetracked by studies of the Third Reich and the effects the Nazi government and churches had on each other.  Then at the invitation of Detroit Mayor Jerome Cavanaugh, he became executive director of the Detroit Citizens Committee for Equal Opportunity and later published The Detroit Riot of 1967, an early definitive account of what was to that point the worst civil disorder in U.S. 20th century history.

From 1967 until 1972 Locke served as Adjunct Assistant Professor of Urban Education at Wayne State University and in 1972 he became the first Director of the new College of Public Affairs at the University of Nebraska-Omaha.  Locke came to the University of Washington in 1976 where he initially served as half time assistant dean of the College of Arts and Sciences and as a faculty member in the School of Public Affairs.  He became dean of the School of Public Affairs in 1982 and served in that position until 1999, retiring as Dean Emeritus from the renamed Daniel J. Evans School of Public Affairs.

Criminal justice also claimed his interest and his research and writing on this topic is extensive. With a long and distinguished record of community involvement, Locke was frequently selected to sit on panels studying Seattle police activities.

In addition to his writing, public-speaking engagements, teaching, research and civic appointments, Hubert Locke found time to serve on numerous Seattle and national boards.  The Seattle boards include Lakeside School,, The Bullitt Foundation, the Seattle Symphony, and the Museum of History and Industry.  The national boards included National Council on Crime and Delinquency, Disciples Divinity House at the University of Chicago, and Disciples Seminary Foundation at Claremont University.

Locke held honorary doctorates from the University of Nebraska-Omaha, University of Bridgeport, Richard Stockton College, Payne Theological Seminary of Wilberforce University, the University of Akron, and the Chicago Theological Seminary.

An award in his name for distinguished service was established at the University of Nebraska-Omaha to honor an individual who has demonstrated exemplary commitment to the ideas of public service.  The Evans School of Public Affairs at the University of Washington also established the Locke Fellowship in Social Justice in honor of Mr. Locke’s years of service to the School of Public Affairs and to the field of social justice.

Hubert Locke died in Seattle, Washington at the age of 84 on June 2, 2018.


    Mary Henry Interview with Hubert Locke, Seattle, October 9, 2007; "Hubert G. Locke," Evans School of Public Policy and Governance website,; Joel Connelly, "Dr. Hubert Locke -- Scholar, Civic Conscience, UW Dean -- Dies at 84,", June 4, 2018,