William Goldman
1979 - 2017
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William Sachs Goldman

Feb. 10, 1979 to Jul. 13, 2017

William Sachs Goldman passed away on Thursday in Sonoma County, California. A proud father, dedicated husband, accomplished professor and historian, and passionate philanthropist, he was 38 years old.

The son of Susan Sachs Goldman and the late Richard Walter Goldman, Bill was born and raised in Washington D.C. where he attended the Sidwell Friends School. He earned a B.A. in History from Yale University where he was a member of the Yale Glee Club and a photographer for the Yale Daily News. He received his master's degree and doctorate in history at the University of California, Berkeley.

Since 2012, he was an assistant professor of international studies at the University of San Francisco, where he specialized in early modern Spanish history. Bill loved sharing his knowledge not only with his students but also with family and friends - on trips, at dinner parties, and wherever he could find an audience. He had previously taught at Stanford University and was a former research fellow at the University of California, Los Angeles.

He cared deeply about giving to his community and was active in a variety of philanthropic endeavors. In 2012, he and his siblings founded the Richard W. Goldman Family Foundation to help underserved children and communities gain access to education, health, and financial resources. He was treasurer of the International Board of Directors of the New Israel Fund, a nonprofit organization dedicated to fostering civil rights and democracy in Israel. He served as president of the board of directors for the Walter and Elise Haas Fund, a family foundation that supports economic security, education, Jewish life, and the arts in the Bay Area.

He also was a volunteer pilot with Angel Flight West, flying 13 missions since 2013 to transport critically ill adults and children to receive medical treatment. He was passionate about flying, political discourse, gourmet food, a good Manhattan, long bike rides, the Washington Redskins, and the San Francisco Giants, but his greatest love was his family.

He is survived by his wife, Serra Falk Goldman, and their two children, George Richard Goldman and Marie Aliena Goldman. He is also survived by his mother, Susan Sachs Goldman; his brother Daniel Sachs Goldman and sister-in-law Corinne Goldman; his sister Alice Goldman Reiter and brother-in-law Benjamin Reiter; his brother-in-law Harry Falk IV and wife Rochelle Falk; and his brother-in-law Taylor Falk and his wife, Rachel Falk. Bill was a beloved uncle to 10 nieces and nephews. He was a staunchly loyal and devoted friend. He was a dedicated leader, teacher, mentor, and advocate for the disadvantaged. The past few days have been a moving reminder of the many people whose lives Bill touched with his kindness, humor, and intellect.

A memorial service will be held on Monday, July 17, 2017, at 10:00 a.m. at the Nourse Theater in San Francisco. The family encourages memorial donations be made to his children's school, La Scuola International School, or the New Israel Fund.

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Published in San Francisco Chronicle from Jul. 16 to Jul. 17, 2017.
Memorial service
10:00 AM
Nourse Theater
Memories & Condolences
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4 entries
July 24, 2017
Lia Westin
July 21, 2017
There are no words to adequately express our grief at the loss of Billy from all our lives. We send our love to Billy's family.
Bob and Josie Scholz
Josie and Bob Scholz
July 20, 2017
So sorry for your loss. May William's memory be a blessing
Neill and Linda Brownstein
July 17, 2017
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