In memory of
Peter Hero
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In memory of
Peter Hero
Peter deCourcy Hero Peter deCourcy Hero died August 21st after a year-long struggle with cancer. During his long career in public service, Peter achieved world-wide recognition as a guiding authority in creating and developing community foundations. In his 19 years as CEO of the Silicon Valley Community Foundation—from 1989 to 2008—Peter increased the Foundation's assets from eight million to 1.4 billion dollars. A Fortune Magazine article, "The Man Who Sold Silicon Valley on Giving," lauded his achievements: "It is Peter Hero, more than anyone else, who has shown Silicon Valley how to give." Peter's contributions to the field of philanthropy were numerous. He was the founding chairman of the Public Broadcasting Service (PBS) Foundation, member of the board of directors of Sesame Workshop, and founding member of the Skoll Foundation. Among other boards he served were the eBay Foundation, Council on Foundations, and Pax Vax. Peter chaired the World Bank Advisory Committee on Global Community Development. Twice Peter received Presidential appointments to the National Endowment for the Arts. He contributed to the book Local Mission, Global Vision: Community Foundations in the 21st Century, now translated into five languages. Other positions included director of the Oregon Arts Commission, president of the Maine College of Art and Design, and vice president of development and institute relations at the California Institute of Technology (Cal Tech). Peter was a gracious, thoughtful leader and mentor. His legacy for advancing philanthropy as a way of life throughout the world will surely inspire countless others to follow his lead. Peter fervently believed that one's wealth can and must contribute to making our world a better place. In addition to a Stanford MBA degree, Peter held a BA in history from Williams College and also an MA in art history. Peter is survived by his wife Bonnie; sons Alexander and Christopher (wife Amy); daughter Molly (husband Chris Richman); brothers Andrew Hero and Girvin Peters. During the last years of his life, Peter's greatest joy was spending time with his little granddaughters, Isla Richman and Harper Hero.
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