Charles Dayton grew up in a farming village in Western New York. After earning BA and MA Degrees in English at Binghamton and Syracuse Universities, respectively, and teaching English for three years in a community college, he moved to Palo Alto in 1972. Here he became a Research Scientist for a national “think tank”, the American Institutes for Research. In 1979 he earned a second MA, in psychology, from San Jose State University.

From 1982-1984 he led an effort to launch the first two “Partnership Academies”, working for the Stanford Urban Coalition. These are high school based programs that integrate career and academic education. They proved to be quite successful, with 400 replications today throughout California, and thousands elsewhere.

In 1984 he moved to Nevada City with his wife and two young children. Here he worked for 12 years as a private education consultant. In 1998 he took on the leadership of an education group in the Graduate School of Education at UC Berkeley, where he stayed until 2015.

Dayton began writing fiction toward the end of this period, gradually cutting back his time at Berkeley. He published his first Lew Travis mystery in 2011, followed by two more, in 2012 and 2013. All are set locally in the Sierra Nevada foothills. In 2014 he published a book of science fiction stories, and in 2016, a literary novel, also set locally.

Sketches of these books and their availability can be found at