Cover photo for Dr. Donald John De Martini EdD's Obituary
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Dr. Donald John De Martini EdD

November 2, 1932 — December 23, 2023


Dr. Donald John De Martini EdD


Dr. Donald John De Martini EdD (1932-2023) passed away on December 23, 2023. He is survived by his children Claudine, Anne-Marie and Michael, his son-in-law Giuseppe Ragusa, his daughter-in-law Alisha De Martini, and six adoring grandchildren (Kirra, Talia, Marco, Amina, Isabella and Lucca). He was predeceased by his loving wife of 55 years, Cecilia De Martini.

Dr. De Martini was born on November 2, 1932 in San Francisco, California. He was the son of Joseph and Laura De Martini. 

Dr. De Martini attended St. Ignatius High School (class of 1950). He graduated from the University of San Francisco and received his Bachelor of Arts in Philosophy in 1954. In 1959 he earned his Master's degree in Education from San Francisco State University. He went on to complete his EdD at the University of California, Berkeley in 1971. 

Dr. De Martini was a life-long educator with more than four decades of service in the bay area and Mendocino County.

In 1971 he and his wife moved to Ukiah, CA where he worked as the Deputy Superintendent of Instruction for the Ukiah Unified School District. In this role he oversaw the district's curriculum.

In 1981, Dr. De Martini was named Educator of the Year by the University of San Francisco, receiving the Dr. Edward J. Griffith Award, the second person to have done so. He was chosen from among 5,000 education alumni based on his collegial record, his contribution to improving instruction across different school districts, and his performance as the instructor in USF’s Master of Arts Education program held in Ukiah.

From 1987 to 1991 Dr. De Martini was the Superintendent of Schools. Of his duties as Superintendent, he enjoyed most being on school campuses each day and meeting with students, faculty and staff. He had many lifelong friends among the teachers and staff in the school district.

Two years after retiring from the school district, Dr. De Martini returned to teaching at St. Mary's Catholic School where he taught 7th and 8th grades. He loved being in the classroom again. He subsequently worked as the academic counselor at Potter Valley High School from 1996 to 2008.

Dr. De Martini was an active member of the Rotary Club of Ukiah. He was a president and secretary of the club.

Dr. De Martini was a devout Catholic and an active member of the St Mary's of the Angel’s parish. He served on the building and fundraising committee to build the current church. 

Donald was a kind, loving and funny person. He was an avid swimmer. He could be seen driving around Ukiah in his 1963 Chevy Impala or his 1964 Triumph Spitfire.

He will be dearly missed.

A rosary will be recited in his honor on Thursday, January 4th, at 4:00 pm at St. Mary of the Angels Catholic Church in Ukiah. A mass will also be celebrated at St. Mary on Friday, January 5th at 10:00 am. He will be buried at Holy Cross Cemetery in Colma on Friday, January 5th at 3:00 pm.  

To order memorial trees or send flowers to the family in memory of Dr. Donald John De Martini EdD, please visit our flower store.

Past Services


Monday, January 5, 0004

10:00 - 11:00 am (Pacific time)

Saint Mary of the Angels Catholic Church

900 S Oak St, Ukiah, CA 95482

Rosary, Thursday, 1/4/2024 4pm St. Mary's

Cryptside, Friday, 1/5/2024 3pm Holy Cross Cemetery, Colma

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