A Political Exit
law requiring the government to offer the land to
the county first, charging that Jones was trying to
manipulate the process for his personal gain.
Back in Marin, Schultz confronted Jones, who
couldn’t deny his actions. The board merely repri-
manded him for using county stationery for personal
correspondence rather than conduct a formal inquiry
as Schultz favored; still, the U. S. government turned
the land over to the Marin County Redevelopment
Foundation in 1956. Aaron Green, an associate of Frank
Lloyd Wright, designed 300 units of housing built over
the next six years; famed landscape architect Lawrence
Halprin designed most of the outdoor common areas.
In 1960, in part to help pay for the civic center, the
county reappraised property taxes, and Schultz’s
district was first to have its taxes raised. Many vot-
ers blamed her, and she lost her bid for a third term
that year. “That was the low point of my life,” she told
the Marin IJ in 1981. “I had really enjoyed being a
supervisor. We were paid $150 a month in those days,
so it never was the money — it was the opportunity
to do some good.”
Yet she remained active in county government and
public affairs. Although she never held office again
(losing a state senate bid in 1964), her list of late-in-
life accomplishments is impressive. She served on the
boards of the Marin Housing Authority and Marin
Redevelopment Agency, led the bond campaign to
create Marin General Hospital, helped create the
Marin Senior Coordinating Council, was a delegate
to the White House Conference on Aging in 1965, and
helped create several public parks and Marin’s first
school for disabled children.
Schultz became blind during the last several years
of her life, but kept informed on current events by
hiring a secretary to read several newspapers to her
every day. She moved to Texas in 1995 to be with her
daughter, son-in-law and three grandchildren and
died shortly after, at age 93.
Perhaps the best assessment of Vera Schultz’s legacy is her own remark, a comment made in 1983 to the
Pacific Sun but just as relevant today. “Before women
can be expected to change the world, they have to be
firmly anchored in it,” she said. “We are still marginal.
The most important thing to both men and women is
that when women are more equal, it completes men
too. It’s going to be better for both. It isn’t that women
gain by taking something away from men, but women
gain by being more truly men’s partner. This is the
best thing for a family, and it’s the best thing for society. That’s what lies ahead.” m
Additional research provided by Ania Skulimowska.
From top: Marin City high-rise
towers as they looked right after
construction around 1960; the
two-story Marin City units with
landscaping in place and kids
enjoying the play area.