Phillippa Daniella Caldeira

January 3, 1968 - August 25, 2019
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Phillippa Daniella Caldeira (known as Pippa by her friends) was born on January 3, 1968, in Berkeley, California, where she lived her entire life. She was an especially lively child, very intellectually engaged, and always reading. Phillippa’s loving and devoted mother, Sandra Aida Parsons, nurtured her daughter’s mind and instilled in her a love of books and education. They made regular trips to the library throughout Phillippa’s childhood. She attended St Augustine’s Elementary School, Holy Names High School and Berkeley High School.

She received her Bachelor of Arts degree in African American Studies from the University of California at Berkeley. While attending school, she worked at the Freight & Salvage Coffeehouse and later at the Berkeley Public Library. After earning a Master’s degree in Library Science from San Jose State, where she was an American Library Association Spectrum Scholar, Phillippa worked at the Graduate Theological Union Library and at the Contra Costa Community College Library.

In 2012,  Phillippa was hired as a reference and instruction librarian at Laney College. She was liked and well respected by staff and faculty. Professors brought their students to her library orientations which she tailored specifically to each class. Phillippa was a passionate teacher. She believed in students and made herself available to help them achieve their academic goals.  No one was more excited than Phillippa when her students succeeded. Phillippa’s strong work ethic, extraordinary research skills, and eidetic memory made her a huge asset wherever she was employed.

Phillippa was driven by her inexhaustible curiosity. She possessed a near encyclopedic knowledge of music and lyrics and had a special passion for opera. She loved Leontyne Price. She was especially pleased to design the website for the big band, Mary Lou’s Apartment. An avid reader with a special appreciation for James Baldwin, Toni Morrison, and Octavia Butler, she never stopped seeking knowledge about history, music and the people in her life. Phillippa had a sharp wit, keen sense of observation, and a talent for making people laugh.

Phillippa is survived by her partner Robin Nzingah Smith, her adopted siblings Anna Rodas and Matthew Schildgen, her niece, Marielena Soledad Rodas, her nephews Jediah and Dabi, and her step-parents, Robert and Brenda Schildgen. She is also loved and missed by a large circle of colleagues, students, and friends.

Fluctuat nec mergitur.

          “She is tossed by the waves, but does not sink.”

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Service Schedule

Service Information

Date: Saturday, September 21, 2019

Time: 11:00 am

Church of Jazz and Justice (aka Plymouth Church)


424 Monte Vista Avenue
Oakland, CA 94611

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Repast to follow.


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Timeline for Phillippa Daniella Caldeira

Born: January 3, 1968
Died: August 25, 2019

Condolences for Phillippa Daniella Caldeira

Sunset View Mortuary

Our sincere condolences.

The staff of Sunset View Mortuary.


Linda Cisneros posted on 11/5/19

My condolences to the family. Ms. Caldeira was a PSSL at Richmond Public Library for a short time, that's when I met her. I was shocked to hear of her passing, very sad. May she rest in peace.


Suzanne Fox posted on 9/21/19

Pippa was a dear old friend from way back where we met and worked at the Freight and Salvage. She was so smart, intuitive and funny. We lost a few years with each other but then recaptured our friendship and had a healthy correspondence through messenger and Facebook. I can’t believe she’s gone... way too young, way too young...