In Memoriam: Alan Stein

Friday, February 16, 2018

By A.C.T. Publications Staff

A.C.T. mourns the loss of Alan Stein, beloved Chair of A.C.T.’s Board of Trustees from 1988 to 1997 and a consummate advocate for and supporter of arts and culture across the Bay Area. A theater-loving Columbia College graduate with a distinguished career in finance, Alan first became involved at A.C.T. in the 1970s, shortly after relocating to San Francisco from New York. In the early days, he worked closely with Artistic Director William Ball to stabilize the company and orient it toward the future.

Carey Perloff and Alan Stein at A.C.T.'s Producers Circle Dinner at The Geary Theater, 2013.
Photo courtesy of Drew Altizer Photography.
In 1988, with A.C.T. facing economic challenges, Alan returned to the board, becoming chair months before the Loma Prieta earthquake. In the wake of that disaster, with The Geary in ruins, Alan pointed the way forward with the words, “The show must go on.”

Alan’s energy, persuasiveness, and financial know-how, developed during a career that included leadership roles at Goldman Sachs and Montgomery Securities, was paramount to A.C.T.’s recovery in the 1990s. He played an active role in hiring Artistic Director Carey Perloff and nurturing her creative vision, and was instrumental in the campaign to rebuild The Geary. His courage, commitment, and irreverence ushered in a new era for A.C.T. and helped stimulate the enormous growth the company has witnessed over the past two decades.

As emeritus chair, Alan served as the campaign co-chair for A.C.T.’s first endowment campaign that secured more than $30 million. Today, Alan and his wife Ruth are remembered throughout A.C.T. in the conference room at 30 Grant that bears their name, and in the Christmas Carol characters Alan and Ruth—two of the jolliest guests at the Fezziwigs’ party.

A.C.T. owes an immeasurable debt of gratitude to Alan, a generous and visionary leader who worked hand in hand with three artistic directors, ensured the company’s long-term financial stability, and played numerous roles across five decades of A.C.T.’s history. We will miss him enormously, and we celebrate his remarkable life.
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