The president of the Berkeley School Board and his wife were hospitalized in critical condition after being hit by a car as they were crossing a street early Saturday, officials said.

School Board Chair Judy Appel and Attorney Alison Bernstein were crossing Martin Luther King Jr. Way near Stuart Street in South Berkeley when a man driving north crushed them. police officers and school officials. The collision occurred just after midnight Friday.

The 81-year-old driver stayed on the scene and cooperated with the investigators, according to Lt. Dave Lindenau of the Berkeley police.

There is a crosswalk at the intersection but no stop sign or traffic lights, Lindenau said. It was not immediately known where Appel and Bernstein were when they were hit.

The accident occurred one block from their home in South Berkeley, according to Berkeleyside, who first reported the incident.

Superintendent Donald Evans said in a statement that school officials were deeply upset by this news.

"We will offer all possible support and assistance to the Appel-Bernstein family and invite the community to join us in hope and prayer for their recovery," Evans said.

Call, a long-time school board member, finished fourth at the primary in June for the District 15 seat of the Assembly. She was co-founder of the Ella Baker Center for Human Rights Board of Directors and was executive director of the coalition of our families, which supports LGBT families.

Bernstein, a lawyer in the Office of the Public Defender, was a lecturer at Berkeley Law School and a member of the Berkeley Police Review Board.

Kimberly Veklerov is a writer at the San Francisco Chronicle. E-mail: kveklerov@sfchronicle.com Twitter: @kveklerov