April 9, 1921 - February 13, 2014
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Former California Insurance Commissioner Stafford R. Grady died peacefully at home in La Canada on February 13. Appointed to the office by Governor Edmund G. "Pat" Brown, he served from 1964 through 1967, during both the collapse of the Baldwin Hills Dam and the Watts Riots.
Born in Grand Rapids Michigan on April 9, 1921, he was the eldest of seven children. He attended Catholic Central High School, before going on to George Washington University and George Washington Law School. Following law school Grady clerked for Chief Justice Harold Stephens, of Washington D.C.'s Federal Appellate Court. He later served as Assistant US Attorney in the Justice Department from 1947 to 1951 under President Truman.
On August 26, 1950, he married Roberta Faith Patterson. They moved to California in 1952 where he joined the firm of Mackay, McGregor, and Bennion. He left the practice of law in 1964 to become California Insurance Commissioner. In 1967 he was named President of First Western Bank which subsequently became Lloyd's Bank, then Sanwa Bank. He remained at Sanwa Bank until his retirement.
Grady served on the Board of Directors of multiple foundations and corporations, including the Gurash Foundation, the Mead Foundation, CIGNA, Lloyds Bank International, and Beckman Instruments. Grady also served as member and Chairman of the Board of several educational institutions, including Occidental College, Loyola Law School and Polytechnic School. Grady had a long standing interest in medical education and served on the board of the Charles Drew Postgraduate Medical School, the Board of Visitors of UCLA Medical School, the Doheny Eye Clinic, and the House Ear Institute.
Grady was a former President of the Friendly Sons of St. Patrick and Medallion of Merit Winner, and also received the State of Israel Award from Yitzak Rabin, then the Israeli Ambassador to the United States. Grady also chaired the local United Way Appeal. He was involved in local philanthropic organizations, including KCET, the Music Center, the Pasadena Library, and the Los Angeles Master Choral.
A devout Catholic, Grady was a Knight of Malta and Knight of St. Gregory. He was a longtime supporter of the Little Sisters of the Poor, the Dominicans, and the Jesuits.
He is survived by his three siblings, Pat O'Brien, David Darling, and Sydney Mae McVoy; his three children, Dr. Stafford Grady(Peg), Maureen Grady, Dr. Shaun Grady(Audrey); and grandchildren, Shannon, Brendan, and Clare Grady, Bronwyn and Aidan Reed, and Kenneth Grady.
In lieu of flowers, the family asks that contributions be made to the Little Sisters of the Poor.
A memorial service will be held at 10:00am on Saturday February 22 at Holy Family Church, 1527 Fremont Ave, South Pasadena
Published in the Los Angeles Times on Feb. 16, 2014