Dec 19, 2017
Federation Mourns Passing of Federation Community Builder Richard Siemens
With profound sadness and the deepest respect we share with you news of the passing of Richard “Dick” Siemens on Sunday, December 17, at the age of 82. Richard was absolutely instrumental in developing our community and in building our Jewish Federation of South Palm Beach County campus as its thriving central address, and a home to the Adolph & Rose Levis JCC, Donna Klein Jewish Academy (DKJA), Jewish Association for Residential Care (JARC) and Ruth & Norman Rales Jewish Family Services.
A private service for immediate family will be held this week, and a larger memorial service is planned for January 9 at Temple Beth El of Boca Raton.
With his wife, Carole who survives him, Richard was a devoted, visionary philanthropist who has left an indelible legacy for local Jewish life and beyond. He set a high bar for philanthropy and leadership in our Jewish community.
Here at Federation, Richard is best known for having, with his business partners, Roy Flack and Stanley Katz, donated land for our campus in West Boca. He went on to carefully plan and develop the entire project, which now bears the name, The Richard and Carole Siemens Jewish Campus. Many will remember him proudly speaking at the dedication of the campus in 1991. A committed Federation leader and philanthropist, Richard served as First Vice President. He and Carole are members of Federation’s prestigious Ketubah Society for cumulative giving.
Our community will be forever grateful that Richard and Carole chose Boca Raton as their home when they moved from Monsey, New York in 1975.
After developing projects in New York, Richard quickly became known as a pioneer in the South Florida residential and commercial construction industries. Richard’s South Palm Beach County projects encompassed country clubs including the Polo Club and senior living communities including Harbour’s Edge, hospitals, oceanfront condos, shopping centers and more. As President & CEO of the Siemens Group at the time of his passing, Richard’s latest local project has been the nine-story, 120-unit Akoya luxury residential project at Boca West.
Richard was broadly and deeply committed to this Jewish community. He was integral to the development and building of several homes for JARC, where he and Carole were key benefactors. Richard was further actively involved in bringing the Gould and Weinberg Houses for seniors and people with disabilities to the Federation campus. He was a fervent supporter of the Levis JCC, and invested in the Jewish future through Jewish education, with generous contributions that enabled the significant expansion of Torah Academy of Boca Raton. Among the honors received by the couple were major recognitions from JARC, DKJA and the Federation.
Richard and Carole’s local philanthropy has also included several arts organizations, and the Drug Abuse Foundation, where Richard served as Life Director. Richard and Carole were instrumental in enabling building of the Siemens-Evert Campus in Delray Beach, which aids thousands of adults and children affected by addiction each year. Richard also served on local boards including West Boca Medical Center and Florida Atlantic University.
The Siemens Group website states as a guiding principle, “It has always been our President, Richard Siemens, and the Siemens Group's philosophy to “enhance and give back to the communities in which we make a living, to make them a better place to live.”
“We are deeply grateful that Richard fulfilled this intent so generously in his too-short lifetime, both through his contributions and by inspiring philanthropy among so many others,” said Matthew C. Levin, Federation President & CEO.
"Through the vision and commitment of giants like Richard, we have been able to literally build our Federation as the hub of one of the fastest-growing, most vibrant Jewish communities in the world on a strong foundation,” said Anne Jacobson, Federation Board Chair. “We will always pay tribute to his memory with the utmost admiration and gratitude. He will be truly missed.”
Our hearts and prayers are with Richard’s wife Carole, their four children Alan Siemens, Scott Siemens (Linda), Robert Siemens (Lisa) and Rebecca Spooner (Jim), and their grandchildren Justin, Jared, Sarah, Max, Daniel, Samuel, Joseph, Jake and Mike. May his memory always be for blessing.