Tale of a Philanthropist
"He was a giant. He could dominate a room with his presence, with his questions, intelligence and insights."
That was a quote from Rabbi Jonathan Stein talking about Gene Glick. Gene passed away on Oct. 2 in Indianapolis. He was 92 years old. He was a very successful developer whose book, "Born to Build," inspired anyone fortunate enough to read it. The book talks about Gene's life and how it was shaped by events.
Of the many moments in his life as a man of Jewish persuasion, one was especially profound. In 1945, as an American soldier, he and his fellow soldiers liberated Dachau, the huge concentration camp outside of Munich. When they arrived, the German guards had fled, and the Russians soldiers hadn't yet gotten there. Gene used his camera to record scenes of thousands of Jewish prisoners that serve as a permanent reminder of crimes against humanity. His pictures have been used in countless World War II documentaries.
When he came home from the war, he found his wife Marilyn and started a family. Gene and Marilyn then created the Gene B. Glick Co. This company is one of the largest privately owned builders and managers of low- and moderate-income housing in the United States. The Glicks established a lasting legacy by giving millions of dollars through their foundations to a wide spectrum of causes. In 2007, for example, they made a $30 million gift to the Indiana University School of Medicine to create the Glick Eye Institute, a clinical and research facility. Gene loved to quote Andrew Carnegie, who said, "Anyone who dies with a substantial estate dies in disgrace." Gene felt to whom much is given much is required. He and Marilyn took great pleasure in making intelligent giving decisions.
Now to the real point of my tale. The Gene Glick I met in the late 1980s was a wonderful man. He was very warm, charming and one of the most professional men I have ever met. He served on the board of the hospital where I worked in development. I learned very quickly that he held court almost every day at the cafeteria. When you were invited to lunch with him, you went directly to a certain table at 1:45 p.m., and every staff member knew his name. You placed your order, which he paid for, and sat down for at least a one-hour conversation
F. Duke Haddad, EdD, CFRE, is currently associate director of development, director of capital campaigns and director of corporate development for The Salvation Army Indiana Division in Indianapolis, Indiana. In addition, he is also president of Duke Haddad and Associates, LLC, and freelance instructor for Nonprofit Web Advisor.
He has been a contributing author to NonProfit PRO for the past 13 years.
He received his doctorate degree from West Virginia University with an emphasis on education administration, master’s degree from Marshall University with an emphasis in public administration and a bachelor’s degree from West Virginia University in business administration, with an emphasis in marketing/management. He has also done post graduate work at the University of Louisville.