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Richard Goldman

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Richard Goldman Obituary
Richard Nathaniel Goldman Apr. 16, 1920 - Nov. 29, 2010 Richard Nathaniel Goldman, philanthropist and co-founder of the world-renowned Goldman Environmental Prize, passed away peacefully early Monday morning at his San Francisco home at age 90. Throughout his life, Mr. Goldman remained dedicated to supporting the San Francisco Bay Area, environmental causes, the Jewish community, Israel and reproductive rights. The son of prominent San Francisco lawyer Richard Samuel Goldman and Alice Wertheim Goldman of Great Falls, Montana, Richard N. Goldman was born and raised in San Francisco. He graduated from University of California at Berkeley and spent a year at Boalt Hall School of Law before serving in the United States Army from 1942 to 1946. In 1949, he founded and was chairman of Goldman Insurance Services. In 1951, Mr. Goldman and his late wife, Rhoda Haas Goldman, a great-grandniece of Levi Strauss, established the Richard and Rhoda Goldman Fund in San Francisco. Since its inception, the Fund has distributed more than $680 million dollars to nonprofit organizations and causes around the world. Through their foundation, their areas of support included efforts as early as the 1960s to support conservation and environmental causes. In 1989, the couple established the Goldman Environmental Prize, which annually awards $150,000 to six grassroots environmental heroes, one from each of the world's inhabited regions. Today, the Goldman Prize is frequently referred to as the "Green Nobel." Mr. Goldman served on the boards of many Bay Area organizations and received numerous civic honors and awards. He was also one of the largest donors to the University of California at Berkeley, his alma mater, wherein he was named the 2010 Alumnus of the Year. Mr. Goldman and his wife, who died in 1996, raised four children in San Francisco. He is survived by three of his children, John D. Goldman and his wife, Marcia, of Atherton, CA; Douglas E. Goldman and his wife, Lisa, of San Francisco, CA; and Susan R. Gelman and her husband, Michael, of Chevy Chase, MD. He is also survived by his daughter-in-law Susan Goldman, widow of his son Richard W. Goldman, who predeceased his parents. In addition, Mr. Goldman is survived by his 11 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren, and his sister Marianne Goldman of San Francisco, CA. A memorial service will be held on Friday, December 3, 2010 at 10:30 a.m. at Congregation Emanu-El, 2 Lake Street (at Arguello) in San Francisco. The family encourages memorial donations be made to Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy; Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco; University of California at Berkeley Department of Intercollegiate Athletics; or a charitable organization of the donor's choosing.
Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Dec. 1 to Dec. 5, 2010
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