LOS ANGELES, Calif.—Jan Reiff, 71, of Los Angeles, Calif., formerly of Mount Carroll died unexpectedly on Tuesday, May 4, 2021, at her home.

She was born Nov. 2, 1949, in Sterling. A 1967 Mount Carroll High School graduate, she completed her undergraduate studies in history at Northwestern University.

She received her Ph.D. from the University of Washington in 1981. She worked at the Newberry Library, Northwestern University, Case Western Reserve University, and the University of Bremen before joining the UCLA faculty in 1992 where she was a professor of history and statistics.

At the time of her death, Professor Reiff was serving as a member of UCLA’s Covid-19 Response and Recovery Task Force and as a special assistant for online teaching and learning.

Her colleagues chose Reiff for the Academic Senate’s Distinguished Teaching Award in 2009, because of her creative and highly effective ideas about how to reform education.

One of Reiff’s signature works was 2004’s “Encyclopedia of Chicago,” which she co-authored with two other persons. The encyclopedia earned Reiff an award from the American Association of Publishers and a commendation from the City of Chicago.