Dr. Mitchell L. Voydat


Dr. Mitchell L. Voydat of Malibu, a noted academic and educator, died at his home in his sleep on April 30. He was 85.

Voydat was well known in the academic community for his role as a leading educator in California and New Mexico. He served as professor of education at the University of New Mexico in Albuquerque. Additionally, he was one of the founders of San Juan College in Farmington, New Mexico. While at UCLA, Voydat’s influence was notable in assisting Eunice K. Shriver at the Joseph P. Kennedy Jr. Foundation in the visit of psychologist Dr. Maria Egg.

When Ronald Reagan began his term as governor, Voydat also moved to Sacramento when he was chosen as Bureau Chief to lead California’s Elementary and Secondary Education Department. A pioneer in the study of continuation education and a noted expert, he was responsible for setting minimum standards for high school continuation education.

During World War II, Voydat served in the OSS, which later became the CIA. He also served under General Patton in the U.S. Army Corps of Engineers, helping to build bridges in Central Europe and the Rhineland. Four days before D-Day, Voydat parachuted into France to help set up advanced communications systems for the Allied Forces.

He was born June 2, 1924 in New York. He was awarded numerous certificates for achieving a score of 100 percent on the New York State Regents’ Math Exams. He was also awarded an athletic basketball scholarship to the University of Mississippi. Voydat received a bachelor of science degree in mathematics and an Ed.D from Columbia University.

He is survived by his wife of almost 58 years, Laura; six children: Laura Richardson of Camarillo, Mitch Voydat of San Pedro, Brice Nielsen of Santa Barbara, Nina Weisberg (Dave) of Calabasas, Aimee Handal (Doug) of Malibu, Joseph Voydat (Beth) of Tigard Oregon; 10 grandchildren and two great-grandchildren.

A funeral Mass was held May 11 at Our Lady of Malibu.