• Dr. Dwight M. Jaffee first taught economics at Princeton, then moved to UC Berkeley in 1991.
  • He was an expert on mortgage reform, banking and insurance.
  • Jaffee was instrumental in the formation of the first business school in the former Soviet Union.

An expert on finance and real estate passed away at the end of January.

Dr. Dwight M. Jaffee passed away on January 28 in San Francisco. He was just shy of reaching his 73rd birthday.

Jaffee was the Willis Booth Professor of Banking, Finance, and Real Estate and Co-Chairman of the Fisher Center for Real Estate and Urban Economics at the Haas School of Business, University of California, Berkeley.

He was an expert on mortgage markets and their reform, banking and international trade. He also wrote extensively on catastrophe insurance, such as coverages for terrorism and earthquakes, auto insurance and energy efficiency in real estate.  

Jaffee testified in before Congress and the SEC involving Freddie Mac, Fannie Mae, and the recent banking and housing crisis. He was also an advisor to many central banks throughout Europe. He was the author of more than seven books and 171 papers. He also penned opinion pieces for newspapers, including The Wall Street Journal.  

“As many of you know, Dwight was a gifted teacher, academic, and administrator, and his leadership was essential to the growth of the Fisher Center and the Haas Real Estate Program over the last 20 years,” wrote his co-chair, Dr. Ken Rosen, in an email to colleagues.

“Dwight was a loving husband and father, and a warm, caring friend. I could always count on him for unconditional support. He will be deeply missed by all of us.”

Prior to joining the Haas School of Business in 1991, Jaffee was a professor of economics at Princeton University. He joined the Princeton faculty in 1968, after obtaining his Ph.D in economics from MIT. A Chicago native, he received his B.A. from Northwestern University, in 1964.

After his appointment in California, he led a cooperative project between the Haas School of Business and the Graduate School of Management at St. Petersburg University in Russia. That project resulted in the first post-Soviet era school of business.

In addition to his wife, Lynne LaMarca Heinrich,  he is survived by his mother, Gertrude of Boca Raton; daughter, Elizabeth, known as Betsy, of Washington, D.C.; son Jonathan of Santa Monica; and two grandchildren. He and his wife resided in Berkeley.

Email Kimberley Sirk.

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