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Finding Aid to the Richard N. and Rhoda H. Goldman Papers, 1863-2003 (bulk 1939-1995)
BANC MSS 2010/687  
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Collection Details
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  • Collection Summary
  • Information for Researchers
  • Administrative Information
  • Biographical Information
  • Scope and Content of Collection

  • Collection Summary

    Collection Title: Richard N. and Rhoda H. Goldman papers
    Date: 1863-2003
    Date (bulk): 1939-1995
    Collection Number: BANC MSS 2010/687
    Creator: Goldman, Richard N. Goldman, Rhoda H.
    Extent: 48 cartons, 3 boxes, 1 oversize box, and 1 oversize folder 61.2 linear feet 9 digital objects (9 images)
    Repository: The Bancroft Library.
    University of California, Berkeley
    Berkeley, CA 94720-6000
    Phone: (510) 642-6481
    Fax: (510) 642-7589
    Email: bancref@library.berkeley.edu
    URL: http://bancroft.berkeley.edu/
    Languages Represented: Collection materials are in English
    Physical Location: Many of the Bancroft Library collections are stored offsite and advance notice may be required for use. For current information on the location of these materials, please consult the library's online catalog.

    Information for Researchers


    Collection is open for research, with the following exceptions: Cartons 5-25 (Richard Goldman's Chronological File) and Box 3 are sealed until 2029.

    Preferred Citation

    [Identification of item], Richard N. and Rhoda H. Goldman Papers, BANC MSS 2010/687, The Bancroft Library, University of California, Berkeley

    Alternate Forms Available

    Digital reproductions of selected items are available.

    Indexing Terms

    The following terms have been used to index the description of this collection in the library's online public access catalog
    Goldman, Rhoda H.,d. 1996
    Goldman, Richard N.,1920-2010--Archives
    Haas, Elise S., 1893-1990
    Haas, Walter A., 1889-1979
    Stern, Rosalie Meyer, 1869-1956
    Goldman family
    Haas family
    American Cancer Society
    Bancroft Library--Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life
    Congregation Emanu-El (San Francisco, Calif.)
    Judah L. Magnes Museum--WJHC 2000.007
    Mount Zion Hospital and Medical Center
    Richard & Rhoda Goldman Fund
    Stern Grove Festival Association
    University of California, Berkeley--Alumni and alumnae
    Environmentalists--California--San Francisco Bay Area
    Jewish families--California--San Francisco
    Jews--California--San Francisco Bay Area--Charities
    Philanthropists--California--San Francisco Bay Area
    San Francisco (Calif.)--Social life and customs

    Administrative Information

    Acquisition Information

    The Richard N. and Rhoda H. Goldman papers were given to The Bancroft Library by the Judah L. Magnes Museum in July 2010.


    No additions are expected.

    Processing Information

    Processed by Magnes Collection of Jewish Art and Life Staff in 2011.

    Biographical Information

    Richard Goldman (1920-2010) was born to Richard Samuel Goldman (from San Francisco) and Alice Wertheim (from Great Falls, Montana). Richard attended the University of California, Berkeley and served in the United States Army between 1942 and 1946. Richard Goldman married Rhoda Haas (1924-1996), daughter of Walter A. Haas, Sr. and Elise Stern, in 1946. Rhoda also attended UC Berkeley as an undergraduate. In 1949, Richard Goldman founded Goldman Insurance Services. The Goldmans had three children: John, Doug, and Susan.
    During the course of the second half of the twentieth century, Richard and Rhoda Goldman established themselves as major philanthropists. The Goldman Fund, the couple's primary philanthropic organization, was launched in 1951. The funding priorities of the Goldman Fund have included programs in the San Francisco Bay Area that are related to local Jewish life, democracy and civil society, social and human services, population, the elderly, violence prevention, and children and youth. The Fund has also provided support to national and international projects relating particularly to the environment, democracy and civil society, population issues, and violence prevention. In 1989, the Goldmans launched the Goldman Environmental Prize, which quickly became the premiere international award for grassroots environmental work. The first Goldman Environmental Prizes were awarded in 1990.
    Among the many Bay Area institutions that have benefited from the Goldmans' generosity are the University of California, Berkeley, San Francisco State University, the San Francisco Jewish Community Center, the Contemporary Jewish Museum, the Jewish Community Federation, Congregation Emanu-El, and Stanford University.
    In addition to their philanthropy, Richard and Rhoda Goldman played important roles in San Francisco civic life, frequently serving on the boards of Bay Area organizations and institutions. Richard was president of the Jewish Community Federation in 1981-1982 (after decades of service to the Federation on various committees). Richard also played roles in the following local, state, and national organizations (among others): the San Francisco Port Commission; the San Francisco Public Utilities Commission; the Yosemite Fund; the Tuolumne River Preservation Trust; San Franciscans for Good Government; The National Institute Against Prejudice and Violence; United Jewish Appeal; the World Affairs Council; AIPAC; Save the Redwoods; the American-Israel Friendship League; and the Stern Grove Festival Association. Between 1992 and 1995, Richard Goldman served in the San Francisco Mayor's Office of Protocol. Rhoda Goldman served on the boards of or was active in the following organizations: Mount Zion Hospital (Board President from 1975-1978); the Levi Strauss Company; the San Francisco Symphony; the San Francisco Foundation; the San Francisco Holocaust Memorial Committee (as Chairwoman); the Stern Grove Festival Association; and the American Cancer Society's Reach to Recovery Program (which she became involved with after her own fight with breast cancer at the age of thirty-one).
    Richard and Rhoda Goldman were politically active, contributing time and money to local, state, and national political campaigns. Richard Goldman participated throughout his life in Republican political organizations and carried on regular correspondence with politicians in San Francisco, Sacramento, and Washington, D.C.

    Scope and Content of Collection

    The Richard and Rhoda Goldman papers document the lives and contributions of two of the most important figures in twentieth-century philanthropy. The papers are divided into 7 series: Personal and Family Papers; Richard Goldman's Chronological File, Richard Goldman's Travel Files; Rhoda Goldman's Subject Files; Rhoda Goldman's Mount Zion Hospital Board of Director Files; Memorabilia and Clippings; and Photographs.
    The personal and family papers in the collection consist of the following: early Haas family documents dating from 1863 to 1907; materials relating to Walter A. Haas, Sr. (Rhoda's father); materials relating to Elise Stern Haas (Rhoda's mother); Rhoda and Richard Goldman's personal and family correspondence; and Rhoda Haas appointment books. Interfiled within the personal correspondence are other materials, including ephemera.
    Richard Goldman's chronological file consists of files dating from 1970 through 1995 on a range of personal, philanthropic, civic, political, and business topics (relating to Goldman Insurance Services). This series of files documents the intersections between the various areas of Richard Goldman's personal and professional lives. The files include general correspondence, some personal correspondence, business correspondence, political correspondence, and correspondence with particular people and regarding particular topics. There are also files on the large number of organizations in which Richard Goldman was active, as well as files on special events, projects, and trips.
    Richard Goldman's Trip Files consists of one carton of files documenting trips Goldman took between 1973 and 1997. Trip files can also be found in Richard Goldman's Chronological File.
    Rhoda Goldman's Subject Files include files Rhoda Goldman created to support her work with various organizations and on a range of topics and people of interest. Included are files on the Jewish Welfare Federation, the San Francisco Foundation, the San Francisco Symphony Association, Stern Grove, the Goldman Environmental Prize, the San Francisco Holocaust Memorial Committee, Temple Emanu-El, and the American Cancer Society.
    The Memorabilia and Clippings series consists of ephemera, memorabilia, and clippings collected by Richard and Rhoda Goldman throughout much of their lives. The series dates from 1929 through 1999. Early materials consist of mainly of ephemera collected by Rhoda Goldman during the 1930s and 1940s and include a good deal of material relating to Rhoda Goldman's student life at the University of California, Berkeley. The series also includes ephemera and clippings relating to the Goldmans' extensive personal, civic, and philanthropic activities in the Bay Area going back to the 1950s and, as such, paints a vivid picture of social and civic life in San Francisco over the course of half a century.
    The Photograph series in the collection consists of some Haas family photos (dating circa 1900-1920), a sizeable number of photographs of Walter A. Haas, Sr.; photographs of Rosalie Meyer Stern, Elise Stern, and Sigmund Stern; photographs of Richard Goldman from his childhood through his adult years; photographs of Rhoda Haas as a child, in her primary and secondary school years, and at the University of California, Berkeley. Other photographs include images of special events and trips.