On behalf of the entire Manhattan Institute community, I am saddened to note the passing of Richard “Dick” Gilder, a former chairman of our board and a great son of New York. Dick enjoyed professional success as an entrepreneur on Wall Street, founding his own brokerage firm, Gilder Gagnon Howe & Co. LLC. When New York faced a grave fiscal crisis in the early 1970s, Dick emerged as one of New York’s most clear-eyed and impactful philanthropists, and in doing so helped get the city he loved back on its feet. He was a founding trustee of the Central Park Conservancy and a co-founder of the Gilder Lehrman Institute of American History, which maintains one of the country’s most impressive collections of archival material and develops programming to improve history education for K–12 students and teachers across the country.
Dick also made a profound contribution to the Institute while working closely with my predecessor, Larry Mone—who shared these words in his memory:
“Dick was a great leader and visionary. He believed good ideas had the power to solve even the most intractable problems. During his time as chairman of the Manhattan Institute, all of my colleagues and I benefited from his keen intelligence and unfailing generosity. He not only helped the Institute achieve success during his tenure, but through his influence and example he provided it with a strong foundation for its future work.”
The Manhattan Institute, like so many other New York institutions, is grateful for Dick’s commitment to preserving the patrimony of his city and country, and we look forward to continuing his important work.