Nancy Dixon Davidson

Date of Birth

January 18, 1939

Date of Death

September 15, 2021

City of Death

Santa Barbara

Nancy Dixon Davidson of Santa Barbara died peacefully on September 15, 2021. Nancy was born on January 18, 1939 in Milwaukee, Wisconsin, to Sigmund and Elizabeth (Brown) Eisenscher. In 1941 her mother remarried Emory H. Dixon, who became a father to her. After graduating from Topeka High School, Nancy attended the University of Colorado where she became passionately involved in politics and in the school newspaper, majoring in political science and receiving multiple honors. While attending CU Boulder, she met her lifelong partner, Roger H. Davidson, whom she would marry in 1961 in Fort Collins, Colorado.

After graduation, Nancy moved to Washington, D.C., working in the office of Senator John A. Carroll of Colorado. Once married, Roger and Nancy moved to Hanover, New Hampshire in 1962, where she worked for the Dartmouth News Service. In 1966 Nancy gave birth to their first son, Douglas Ross Davidson. In 1968 the family moved to Goleta, California where Roger joined the Department of Political Science at UC Santa Barbara. In 1969 Nancy gave birth to their second son, Christopher Reed Davidson. She will be remembered as a loving and dedicated mother to her two sons. She was very involved in the local school community, and volunteered as a Cub Scout Den Mother while continuing to work as a book editor.

In 1980 the family moved back to Washington, where Nancy began an eighteen-year career as an editor at the Brookings Institution, becoming their first acquisitions editor. In 1999, Nancy and Roger retired, moving back to Santa Barbara. In retirement, Nancy dedicated her time to worthy causes, becoming co-chair of the local Planned Parenthood’s annual book sale and serving on their board of directors. She was also active in cultural affairs, serving on the board of Ensemble Theatre Company and raising funds for their theater renovation.

Over the years Roger and Nancy would cherish their time with many dear friends in Washington, New York, Boulder, Hanover, Santa Barbara, Goleta, and elsewhere. Nancy was well known for playing Scrabble and leading singing groups among her friends. She and Roger would frequently break into song on the spur of the moment. She was an avid reader who also shared her love of books through her book club, and she will be fondly remembered for her insight and sense of humor.

Nancy was a loving and supportive wife to Roger, her husband of almost 60 years, and together they shared a lifelong passion for music, art, literature, theater, and travel. She was a devoted mother and grandmother to her sons Douglas (Victoria) and Christopher (Theodora) and her six grandchildren (Elizabeth, Thomas, James, Alexander, Emily, and Olivia). She is also survived by her half brother, Michael Eisenscher, and half sister, Judith Schaffner.

In lieu of flowers, gifts in her honor may be made to the Davidson Family Fund at the University of Colorado, or to the Michael J. Fox Foundation for Parkinson’s Research.


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