Frances Louise Hildebrand
September 30, 1943 – May 16, 2020
Fran Hildebrand, San Francisco native, Lowell graduate, Barnard student, UC Berkeley grad, and lover of all things San Francisco, died at her home from complications from COPD.
Friends will always remember her keen intellect, kindness, and fantastic laugh. She loved books, writing, and a good martini with friends. In her writing group, she was known as the woman who would be given a topic and twenty minutes later, come up with a witty succinct anecdote – all typed into her cell phone. Giants and Forty-niner games gave her as much pleasure as the SF Symphony, SF Ballet, Feinstein's at the Nikko, ACT and Berkeley Rep. Yearly trips to New York allowed more theater and cabaret. Travel was always important, whether a cruise, a trip to Europe, or something within the United States. After a trip to Ashland to see the Oregon Shakespeare Festival, she told a friend, "I love concrete, but every once in a while, I need some trees."
As an employee of Pacific Bell, she was at the forefront of women in higher management positions, helping to introduce many leading-edge computer services. After retirement, she consulted for several companies including IBM and PwC. She went on to become the Development Director for the San Francisco Community Music Center, and remained an ardent supporter after retiring from that position. She volunteered on several boards: the Center for Elder Suicide Prevention, the Institute on Aging, Gramercy Towers HOA, Nob Hill Association, and the University Club of San Francisco. Recently, she worked with the Bethany Center on Senior Housing.
Her circle of friends included former colleagues, classmates, Baby Boomers to Gen Z. Her smile, perfectly timed bit of advice, and profound presence even when saying nothing at all will be missed.
She is survived by her nephews, Ralph and Steven McGrath and Steven's children, Ariel, Cameron, and Siobhan McGrath.
A celebration of life will be held at a later date. In lieu of flowers please consider a donation to the San Francisco Community Music Center, the Institute on Aging, the UCSF Foundation for the Benefit of the Division of Cardiology at the UCSF School of Medicine, or the California Pacific Medical Center.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from May 23 to May 24, 2020.