ROGER BOAS

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Obituary

BOAS--Roger.

San Francisco city official and business leader, 95, died February 10. Boas graduated from Stanford University, 1942, and enlisted in the Army the next day. He was an artillery forward observer in the 4th Armored Division of Patton's Third Army. Boas was awarded a Silver Star and Bronze Star and was a Chevalier of the Legion of Honor. Boas recounted his war experience in his 2015 memoir, "Battle Rattle: A Last Memoir of WWII." After the war, Boas took over and expanded his father's automobile business, which continued for 65 years. He produced and moderated KQED's first public affairs show, "Profile Bay Area," in the 1950s. In 1963 he created and moderated "World Press," which became the longest running panel discussion televised on approximately 185 public access stations. Boas served eleven years on the S.F. Board of Supervisors, actively promoting the nascent rapid transit system (BART) and fighting to keep high-rises off the city's waterfront. He chaired Robert Kennedy's S.F. presidential campaign and was California Democratic Party state chair. In 1977, Mayor George Moscone named him Chief Administrative Officer, a post he held for 10 years, managing more than a third of the city's departments. He oversaw the construction of the Moscone Center, made the city competitive with other U.S. tourist-convention cities, ensured the growth of Hotel Tax Fund to support and expand all the arts, and administered the city's largest public works program, the $1.5 billion Clean Water Program. Boas taught Urban Studies at the Fromm Institute. Said a friend, "He left this world much better than he found it." Roger Boas is survived by his wife, Nancy Boas, children, John, Christopher, Anthony and Lucy, and six grandchildren.

Published in The New York Times on Feb. 26, 2017
bullet Bronze Star bullet U.S. Army
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