May 11, 1964 - November 17, 2018
After a shockingly short seven week battle with an aggressive form of pancreatic cancer, Gerald Huff passed away in his sleep at home in Berkeley on November 17, 2018 at the age of 54. He was born on May 11, 1964 in New York City. When his family moved to San Francisco in 1977, he entered San Francisco University High School as a freshman. There began his fascination with computers and the problem-solving potential of coding. He then attended Harvard University where he met Judy Bliss, the love of his life. After graduation, he began his career at the management consulting firm of Bain & Co. in Boston. When his father was also diagnosed with pancreatic cancer, Gerald moved back to the Bay Area in 1986. In spite of the long-distance aspect of their relationship, Judy and Gerald married in October of 1988 and had two children, Paul and Jane. He is survived by his wife and children, his mother, Gisèle and his sister, Michèle.
After leaving Bain & Co., Gerald co-founded Avantos, a start-up that created management software. He was proud that the business grew to $7 million in revenues over six years but it was ahead of its time and closed for lack of growth. Given his expertise, he was quickly recruited by Intuit where he remained for twelve years attaining the position of director of the Technology Innovation Group. In 2010, he joined Tesla as a principal software engineer to work on the Model S infotainment system and later became the technical lead for the software that manages the flow of thousands of Model 3 parts throughout the factory. He was drawn to Tesla’s mission to transform transportation from fossil fuels to electricity.
Gerald loved to travel and explore new places, from scuba-diving in the Great Barrier Reef to trekking to Machu Picchu. He was very invested in education, and served on the board of his children’s K-8 school, Prospect Sierra in El Cerrito. He was also politically active and was passionate about making the world a better place. He was especially concerned about the growing income divide in the country and the prospect of technological unemployment which led him to become a strong proponent of Universal Basic Income. This inspired him to write a novel, Crisis: 2038, a techno-thriller with a moral imperative, which was just published posthumously and is available on Amazon.
The world has lost a great man, loved, admired and respected by all who knew him, and his family, friends and colleagues will miss him terribly. A private family celebration of life will be held in mid-December. To honor Gerald, the family asks that you order a copy of his book, Crisis: 2038, read it, and share it widely.