Bay Area Visionary, Richard Goldman, Dies at 90

BY JENNIFER WARBURG
December 6, 2010
San Francisco loses an environmental leader

Last week the Bay Area lost one of its most generous and influential environmental leaders. Richard Goldman, co-founder of the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund, died at home on November 29.   

Through their family foundation, Richard and his wife Rhoda have given away hundreds of millions of dollars to a variety of arts and environmental initiatives. The Goldmans are perhaps best known for the Goldman Environmental Prize, a grant awarded to grassroots environmentalists around the world, often referred to as “the Green Nobel” and the most prestigious award of its kind.   

Yet, Mr. Goldman was also extremely engaged locally.  He and his wife both grew up in San Francisco and spent their entire lives in this city. Richard has said in interviews that his commitment to the environment was first inspired on walks through Golden Gate Park. His charitable donations to the Golden Gate National Recreation Area have helped fund critical improvements to the parks’ infrastructure. Well into his ninetieth year Mr. Goldman was active at SPUR. He served on the SPUR Board of Directors and Executive Committee from 1970 to 1987. The Goldman Fund made a major contribution to the Urban Center, and the green roof of our building bears his and his wife’s name. Most recently, the fund made an important grant to support SPUR’s work on regional water policy. The Goldman family remains among SPUR’s primary benefactors.   

A stalwart example of locally engaged, environmentally conscious, visionary business leadership, Richard Goldman will be missed by everyone at SPUR.

[Photo courtesy Goldman Fund]