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San Francisco Chronicle
Friday, December 14, 2001
A 33

Charles Lamb -- S.F. labor leader
by Larry D. Hatfield, Chronicle Staff Writer

San Francisco -- A memorial service for Charles Michael Sterling Lamb, a longtime San Francisco labor leader and an eloquent advocate for social justice, will be held Wednesday from 7 to 9 p.m. at the Longshoreman's Hall, 400 North Point St. in San Francisco.

Mr. Lamb, 62, was representing the California School Employees Association in arbitration at the time of his death from cancer on Dec. 7 in San Francisco.

A native of Buenos Aires, where his father was a consulting engineer for the first movie studio in Argentina, Mr. Lamb returned to the United States, living for varying times in Rochester, N.Y., Lancaster, Pa., and several towns in the Bay Area.

He was graduated from Palo Alto High School and attended Foothills College before becoming part of the Peninsula beat scene in the late 1950s and early 1960s. Among his friends were Ken Kesey, Jerry Garcia, Phil Lesh and other icons of the counterculture movement.

He ran the Sterling art gallery in Palo Alto for many years.

Moving to San Francisco in 1965, Mr. Lamb played guitar and sang with the band Freedom Highway, appearing at the Fillmore and Avalon with bands such as Big Brother & the Holding Company, Buffalo Springfield and the Grateful Dead.

He joined Local 2 of the Hotel, Restaurant and Bartenders Union when he went to work for Davre's, a catering and restaurant firm. As a leader of the upstart Alliance of the Rank and File, which campaigned on a platform promising "watchdogs, not fat cats," he became president of Local 2 in 1979 and served until 1985.

During that time, he was involved in local progressive politics and fought for such causes as the Proposition R rent control campaign, Action for Accountable Government and various efforts to obtain equal rights for women and gays.

In recent years, he took up classical guitar and pursued his pastimes of poetry, history, aircraft and flying. He was training for his private pilot's license when his melanoma was discovered last year.

Mr. Lamb is survived by his wife, Joan Braconi of San Francisco; a daughter,
Anastasia Lamb of Santa Rosa; two sons, Sean, of Sausalito, and Peter, of Raleigh, N.C.; stepchildren Bill Braconi, of Fairfax, and Lael Kopoke, of San Francisco; two brothers, Anthony, of Burlington, Vt., and Richard, of Truckee; a sister, Susan Lamb Bean, of Flagstaff, Ariz., and his faithful companions Zoey the dog and Blackie the cat.

The family prefers that memorial contributions in his name be made to help the 3,000 Hotel and Restaurant Workers employees who have been laid off since the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks at: Community Services Fund, San Francisco Labor Council, 1188 Franklin St., No. 203, San Francisco CA 94109.
San Francisco Chronicle
Sunday, December 16, 2001
A 30

LAMB, Charles Michael -- In San Francisco on December 7, 2001, from melanoma. A former President of the Hotel and restaurant Employees, Local 2, at the time of his death Charles represented member of the California School Employees Association, AFL-CIO. Born in Buenos Aires, Argentina on July 9, 1939, Charles was an eloquent voice for social justice and a great lover of people and animals. He was renowned for his kindness, and his enthusiasm for many interests, especially history and literature, art, aircraft and travel. Charles was a gifted storyteller and musician who sang with the San Francisco boys Chorus in the early '50's, played with rock band Freedom Highway in the '60's and recently studied classical guitar. Charles is survived by his wife, Joan Braconi, his daughter Anastasia of Santa Rosa, his sons, Sean of Sausalito and Peter ofRaleigh, N.C., his stepchildren, William Braconi and Lael Kopke, granddaughter Isabella, his brother Anthony and Richard and his sister, Susan Lamb Bean. He is mourned by innumerable friends, including his beloved Zoey and Blackie. A Celebration of Charles' Life will be held on Wednesday, December 19, 7:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. at the ILWU Hall, 400 North Point, San Francisco. Memorial contributions may be made to the Community Services Fund, SF Labor Council, 1188 Franklin St., #203, SF, 94109 to help the HERE Local 2 members who have been laid off since Sept. 11.

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