William S. “Bill” Beinecke ’36 — who helped establish the Yale School of Management — died on Sunday morning, 44 days short of his 104th birthday.
Beinecke was the son of Frederick W. Beinecke, the founder of the Beinecke Rare Book and Manuscript Library. He was a donor to the library and the principal benefactor of the Yale Golf Course for more than half a century. Beinecke was a graduate of Columbia Law School, founder of the Central Park Conservancy and chairman of S&H Green Stamps. He also served on the Yale Corporation.
Beinecke was also instrumental in the foundation of the Yale School of Management in 1976. He had championed the initiative to establish a business school at the University for over two decades.
“If anyone can be described as the founder of the [SOM], it is Mr. Beinecke,” Acting Dean of the SOM Anjani Jain wrote in an email to the SOM community on Sunday. “His steadfast vision for the [SOM], his knowledge of the rapidly evolving private and public institutions in the country, his unstinting service to Yale, and his deep respect for Yale’s scholarly tradition earned him the powers of persuasion that eventually resolved the debate and endowed the [SOM] with the mission that remains invariant to this day.”
In the email, Jain referred to Beinecke’s account of the birth of SOM, which he gave in his address in 1983 to the first five-year reunion of the charter class of 1978, as “illuminating” and “inspiring.” Beinecke remained “astonishingly lucid, sharp, and joyful till the end of his life,” Jain added.
The Beinecke Terrace Room, a lecture hall and entertainment space that has an outdoor terrace with views of landscaped gardens in the rear of the campus, is a significant feature of Evans Hall. Beinecke is survived by two sons, Rick Beinecke ’66 and John Beinecke ’69, and two daughters, Sarah Beinecke Richardson and Frances Beinecke ’71 F&ES ’74.
Saumya Malhotra | firstname.lastname@example.org
Correction, April 9: A previous version of this story included an incomplete list of William Beinecke’s children.