Share Your Memories

In Celebration of Evelyn D. Haas

Some knew her as a terrific friend, others as an influential civic leader and patron of the arts. Evelyn D. Haas touched the lives of countless people through her philanthropy and public service – and through a life filled with laughter, adventure and fun.

Here’s a chance to share your story about how Evelyn D. Haas may have touched your life. This is a place for memories from friends, and from those who had the opportunity to work with Evelyn Haas in one of her numerous community pursuits.

And it is a place for those who may not have met or known her to share their stories, too – stories about how you might have been touched by her work and her commitment to the charitable causes she held dear, from important grassroots organizations to civic and cultural institutions such as the San Francisco Museum of Modern Art, the San Francisco Symphony, Crissy Field and the Presidio, and the Chronicle Season of Sharing Fund.

However you knew her, we invite you to join with others in documenting the impact Mrs. Haas had on the people she met and loved, on her community and on the world.

17 Messages

Tom David — Monday February 08 2010

Mrs. Haas and her husband set a sterling example for all of us and have left behind a lasting legacy of their generosity and civic leadership. The foundation they created has been a leader on many fronts, from support for the University of California and other public jewels like Crissy Field to their bold support for marriage equality, the rights of immigrants and strengthening the leadership of local nonprofit organizations. They've not been afraid to take risks in a field that is ordinarily rather risk averse. Consequently, their influence has far exceeded the dollars they've personally invested. We may have lost one of the leading lights of local philanthropy, but the good work will continue. My condolences to the foundation staff and board.

 

Greg Moore, Golden Gate National Parks Conservancy — Monday February 08 2010

I join so many others who admired the vision, generosity and public spirit of Evelyn Haas. I was lucky enough to have known her personally through her commitment to the Crissy Field restoration project, spearheaded by a lead gift from the Evelyn and Walter Haas, Jr. Fund. With this project, her aspirations were clear – to create a place that would bring joy and meaning to the full spectrum of our community. Her vision included not just the restoration of this old Army airfield into a beautiful park for all, but the inclusion of ongoing programs to welcome school children, families, and community organizations to Crissy Field, especially those most in need of this experience. Each day, Crissy Field now brings joy to thousands in our community. Evelyn Haas was not just about the big picture, but about getting the vision right in all its manifestations. She personally planted many of the native plants on Crissy Field during its restoration. Now those plants have grown and blossomed, just like so many wonderful things she nurtured throughout her life – her family, her friends, and her multiple gifts to improve and enrich our community. For me, I can see her legacy at Crissy Field everyday. For the broader community, she sets an example of generosity and public spirit that we all can strive to emulate.

 

Connie Dubin — Sunday February 07 2010

Evie was an inspiring foundation trustee during the half-decade I worked as program staff for the Haas, Jr. Fund. Her genuine concern for people and their needs was matched by her profound appreciation for the grantees working to address those needs--and underlying conditions.

Evie led by example. Her values drove hard work and thoughtful philan-thropy. She paid attention to the big picture as well as to nuanced detail and always seemed to know just when to express compassion or deliver a funny on-liner!

Evie had the good fortune to see all her children embrace important family values and engage in the serious work of the foundation that she and Walter founded.

The rest of us have the good fortune to see her legacy grow, as her children continue the traditions of service and generosity, and continue philanthropy that makes such a difference is so many people's lives. As we mourn her loss, we celebrate Evie and her beloved family.
 

Judith Anderson — Sunday February 07 2010

Evelyn had a talent for serving the community at large, no matter her philanthropic undertaking.

She graced my life in many ways:

As Wheaton alums, sharing a laugh while tailgating prior to my first baseball game – the A’s!
As a mentor for my volunteer work with the arts: first on the membership committee of the SF Museum of Art and then urging me to chair SFMOMA’s first Modern Ball fundraiser.
As museum representatives to personally greet members during member only events, with her mantra: it’s all about community.
I run at Crissy field and when I pass the donor sign I recall her fishing stories and love of the outdoors.
As a champion for change and progress I am thankful for the fine athletic center at Wheaton; it was a necessity for the newly coed college.
As an authentic, gracious, hands-on philanthropist, with a keen sense of humor, Evie’s guidance will always be with me.

My sincerest sympathies to the extended Haas family,
Judith Anderson

 

President Emerita Wheaton College Dale Rogers Marshall — Friday February 05 2010

When I became President of Wheaton College in MA in 1992, Evie
and Walter were wonderfully welcoming. I remember some amazing
meals together when I visited San Francisco. What Evie didn't know
was that she was a major reason I took the job. Before Wheaton, I lived with my husband and family in the Bay Area and admired everything I knew about her from reading the paper. Imagine my delight when I found out during the search process for Wheaton's presidency, that that wondeful human being, Evie Haas, was an alum
of Wheaton! I figured that Wheaton must be a great place if it had
an alum like Evie Haas! And as I got to know them both better, my expectations were exceeded by the reality. Wheaton and I are forever in her debt. Dale Rogers Marshall,

 

Victoria Wood — Friday February 05 2010

It was my pleasure to know Evie through my philanthropic and nonprofit work.

Every time I take a walk at Crissy Field, I thank her and Walter for their vision and extraordinary legacy.
 

Lori Fogarty — Friday February 05 2010

It's the end of an era. Evie Haas was a true grand lady and set the standard for generosity, grace, good humor, hard work, and true authenticity. She has touched so many lives and her legacy will truly live on. We send the extended Haas family our sincere sympathies.

 

Ali Noorani — Thursday February 04 2010

As a Cal Bear and as executive director of an organization fighting to keep the American Dream alive through comprehensive immigration reform, I am thankful for everything the Haas family has done. Thank you for everything.

 

Cynthia Scheiderer — Thursday February 04 2010

Evelyn Haas' gifts and legacy go far beyond her wonderful contributions in San Francisco. Those of us working around the country on LGBT equality are grateful for the Fund's leadership and contributions in this area. Our hearts go out to Mrs. Haas' family and friends, and everyone at the Fund. She remains an inspiration.

 

Jason Thompson — Thursday February 04 2010

My condolences...

A very sad day for sure. We should all take the time to remember her gifts to the world, as well as her husband's. As a die-hard A's fan, I am sad to hear of her passing. The year's their family owned the A's were the glory days of my youth.

I can also say that I have thoroughly enjoyed the SF MOMA and many of the other institutions that Evelyn and Walter have dedicated their time and money towards.

My love and prayers go out to their friends and family.

Jason

 

Kerin E. Stackpole — Thursday February 04 2010

I was saddened to hear of Evelyn's passing. I met my fellow Wheaton alum on campus some years ago. I found her to be gracious and kind, and her legacy at Wheaton was to strengthen the college with great support of students and their dreams.

Many thanks to Evelyn for her kindness and generosity. Her family will be in our prayers. Respectfully, Kerin Stackpole, Wheaton College '84

 

kathy wood — Thursday February 04 2010

The A's family will miss you. You were such a community person. RIP Evelyn!.

Celia Alario — Wednesday February 03 2010

Blessings to you at this time!

Though I never had the chance to meet her, Evelyn's generous and smart philanthropy fueled many groups and endeavors that touched my world.

What is remembered lives! Viva!

 

Holly Minch — Wednesday February 03 2010

Evelyn and Walter Haas Jr.'s legacy is a testament to their committment to fairness, opportunity and access for all. My gratitude to them and their family is deep and wide.

Thank you for ensuring that special places like Crissy field are available for all to enjoy.

Thank you for fighting for marriage equality for my gay and lesbian family and friends.

Thank you for believing that everyone who comes to this country in search of opportunity for their families should be treated with the dignity their hard work has earned.

Thank you for your belief in a better world and your committment to help make it real each and every day.

My thoughts are with Mrs. Haas' family, my heart is with her vision and my hands are ready to work to realize it.

 

Kerry Dean Forbord — Wednesday February 03 2010

Although I never knew Mrs. Haas personally, her vision for charitable work in the Bay Area has helped us to help many people in Oakland (mostly refugees and immigrants and their young children). I know she will be greatly missed.

 

Bill Woodwell — Wednesday February 03 2010

I did not know Mrs. Haas personally but I have always loved her story – moving west as a young woman with her new husband to raise a family, embracing San Francisco with open arms, and having such an enormous impact on the city through her philanthropy and the sheer force of her personality.

I have always been impressed by the fact that the family foundation she created with her husband never shied away from taking on tough
problems and standing up for rights and opportunities for all people.

It is heartening to know that the foundation’s work will continue in the same spirit under the leadership of the next generation of the family.

 

Bill Ribar — Wednesday February 03 2010

Ever since we began working with you we heard stories of Evie's warmth, conviction and vision - so I know the Fund will miss her profoundly.

The Fund has been a stalwart in our community - providing much needed leadership, never shrinking the tough fights, and being a persistent and insistent voice for equality and fairness. My sense is that those are the basic values passed down directly from Evie and Walter to the Haas children to the Fund and ultimately to become part of our community. A remarkable legacy.

My condolences the family, to you, and to our friends at the Fund.

Bill