Dayle Wayne 'Sundown" Bartlett

Friday November 04, 2016 - 10:50:00 AM
Dayle Wayne 'Sundown" Bartlett 1946-2016
Dayle Wayne 'Sundown" Bartlett 1946-2016

Dayle was born in St. Louis, Missouri on August 4, 1946 to Albert Bartlett Sr.and Okalavia Helen Doeswell, both deceased. 

Dayle attended Washington University and earned a degree in history. From there he moved to Berkeley in 1970. Once in Berkeley, Dayle became close friends with Maudelle Shirek and her husband, with whom he lived while attending the Graduate Theological Union. Under Maudelle's mentorship, Dayle became a tireless advocate for the people. 

Dayle worked as Maudelle Shirek's chief aide from about 1987 to 2002 and wrote 353 pieces of legislation during that time. Notable achievements include Meals on Wheels, Disability Rights, and Senior Centers. Dayle worked with Maudelle, Ron Dellums and others to create the first sanctions against South Africa, and then to bring the new South African leader, Nelson Mandela, to Oakland.  

Dayle also worked for George Moscone when he was Mayor of San Francisco. He also worked with Hubert Humphrey on his presidential campaign; where they became close friends. Dayle was active in Democratic Party politics and served on the Alameda County Central Committee during the 1990's. 

Dayle valued the Fair Housing legacy of Berkeley's African American leaders such as Byron Rumford and Maudelle by working to maintain affordable housing in Berkeley for low-income African Americans. Dayle helped create the South Berkeley Neighborhood Development Corporation(SBNDC); and worked diligently to keep the SBNDC in good standing, even during his illness. 

Dayle mentored countless young people and served on the board of the Cooperative Credit Union and helped expand its membership so all South Berkeley residents were eligible to enjoy the benefits of membership. 

He worked throughout the Bay Area in Richmond, Oakland and San Francisco to help retain strong vibrant African American neighborhoods. Dale is featured in the documentary, North Richmond: Past, Present and Future by Doug Harris.  

In addition to his political work, Dayle was a talented musician who wrote music, played piano and sang. He was close friends with Miles Davis, Milt Jackson, and Cedar Walton, and often entertained other accomplished musicians when they were in town. 

Dayle was also a talented business man. He created a vitamin enriched hand lotion, a superfood product derived from kelp and an organic coffee line called Bartlett's Coffee. 

Dayle never faulted or neglected to speak truth to power. He was a strong beloved fighter for the rights of us all and his passing is a loss to the South Berkeley community he loved so much. 

Dayle is survived by his wife of 30 years, Joan Cardellino, his daughter, Chezia Bartlett, adopted daughter Christina McClain, sons Shine Benjamen Bartlett and Gaylen Conley, and grandson Mish Conley. 


A memorial will take place at 3 p.m.tomorrow, Saturday, November 5, at Berkeley Community Church,1802 Fairview in Berkeley, at the corner of Fairview and Ellis.