The Fine Work and Life of John Silber

Dear Academy Families,

This week marks the passing of John Silber, Boston University’s president emeritus and founding patron of the Academy.  He was also the grandfather of three Academy students over the years.

The newspapers have shared the rich and varied life of John Silber, with the wide range of opinions about his interests, civic contributions, accomplishments, and personal style. I had the privilege of getting to know him over the last six years as a member of the Academy community. He would often attend our Commencement, and he had a particular seat in the Tsai Theater that would be reserved for him (two-thirds back, on the right-center aisle). Afterwards, he inevitably wrote me a glowing note, remarking on what had gone well and what could have gone better. We had an annual lunch each summer, at one of which we discussed architecture as his latest book on contemporary architects had just been published (he loved Gaudi and disliked Gehry).

There will be many appropriate moments in the coming weeks to honor the fine work and life of John Silber. Still, it is pleasing to think that the ongoing success of Boston University and Boston University Academy will be lasting tributes to his legacy for years to come. He will be much missed.

Warm regards,
James S. Berkman
Head of School

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