Jonathan Duncan Bulkley A San Francisco resident for more than fifty years, and a prominent architect and founder of a real estate investment firm, died peacefully, after a year long illness on April 30, 2012, with his family at his side. Mr. Bulkley was born on August 5, 1930 in Port Chester, New York, and grew up on Dongle Ridge Farm in North Salem, New York. He was the fifth child of Henry Duncan Bulkley and Wynanda Koechlin Boardman. Mr. Bulkley attended Deerfield Academy, and before entering Yale University he served in the United States Marine Corps Reserve from 1948 to 1950. He graduated from Illinois Institute of Technology in 1957 where he studied architecture under Ludwig Mies van der Rohe, who would become a lifetime intellectual guiding spirit. In 1960, Mr. Bulkley opened an architecture practice in San Francisco. For over thirty years, he specialized in designing commercial and residential buildings in the San Francisco Bay Area. One of his last large projects in the city was Divisadero Heights, a multi-unit building noted for its reinterpretation of Victorian design. In 1980 he founded Round Hill Pacific, a successful family owned residential real estate firm with multi-state holdings. Mr. Bulkley was a life long collector and amassed a large collection of 19th century letterheads, advertising trade cards, and stamps. In March of 2010, in recognition of his outstanding collecting accomplishments, The Ephemera Society of America awarded Mr. Bulkley its highest honor, the Maurice Rickards Medal. The Bulkley Collection of Commercial Stationery has recently been donated to the Huntington Library where it will be available to scholars as an important primary resource for the study of American business history and architecture. Mr. Bulkley used his educational background and work expertise to help the community where he lived. In 1970, he became a founding member of PAR, San Francisco's largest member neighborhood organization dedicated to improving the quality of life and architecture in the Richmond District and was a longtime member and supporter of SPUR. Following his interest in local politics, he made an unsuccessful bid for the S.F. Board of Supervisors in 1984. His family and friends fondly remember him for his keen intellect and sense of humor, sage advice, and for his love of children and pets. He was a Giants and 49ers fan. Mr. Bulkley is survived by his wife, Lisa Baker Bulkley, his children, Honor Bulkley, Adrienne Bulkley and Suzanne Esser, all of the San Francisco Bay Area; Peter Bulkley of Ontario, Canada, Peter Esser of Oahu, Hawaii, Derick Bulkley of Cebu, Philippines, and seven grandchildren. A private memorial to celebrate Mr. Bulkley's life is pending. In lieu of flowers, the family requests donations in his name to the Friends of S.F. Animal Care & Control, The Hermitage Cat Shelter in Tucson, AZ, or the Support Fund for the Bulkley Collection at the Huntington Library in San Marino, CA, attn: K. Valentine.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from May 8 to May 12, 2012.