Tad Taube: Philanthropist and Sports Enthusiast
May 17, 2018
If you know tennis in Northern California, chances are you know of Tad Taube. After all, his family’s name graces the Stanford tennis stadium and he’s been a significant supporter of and past chair of the Stanford Athletic Board.
Tad, who was born in Poland in 1931 and immigrated to the United States in the summer of 1939 just before World War ll, built a remarkable legacy as a philanthropist, business man and sports enthusiast. His storied career began when he earned $50 a day at Metro-Goldwyn-Mayer. The studio needed Polish and Russian child actors for pro-war propaganda films.
His father guided him to select Stanford for college where he joined the tennis team. After graduation, Tad joined the Air Force where he developed and installed landing systems to help pilots navigate in zero visibility. ADVERTISEMENT During his service, he was sworn in as a U.S. citizen.
Tad’s post-service career included earning a master’s degree in industrial engineering, starting a research lab that developed test equipment for the newly forming semiconductor industry, taking that firm public and then starting his career in real estate. Tad helped apparel magnates, Joseph and Stephanie Koret, diversify their fortune with real estate.
At Stanford University, he established the Taube Center for Jewish Studies and serves on its advisory board. He is also past chair for the Stanford Athletic Board. His support for Stanford Athletics includes his family’s principal gift to the Taube Family Tennis Stadium as well as his significant support for Stanford’s new football stadium built in 2006. Tad was a founder of the United States Football League in 1982 and principal owner of the Oakland Invaders football franchise.
Other milestones for Tad include serving as chair and founder of the Taube Foundation for Jewish Life & Culture, serving as President Emeritus of the Koret Foundation, and serving as chair and founder of Woodmont Companies, a diversified real estate investment and management firm. He also has served as a trustee at University of Notre Dame de Namur, the University of San Francisco and as governor of Hebrew University in Jerusalem. He is a past member of the Board of Overseers of the Hoover Institute as well as its Executive Committee. He is a founder and past chairman of the Stanford Institute for Economic Policy Research (SIEPR).
In 2006, Tad was inducted into the Northern California Jewish Sports Hall of Fame and in 2014 into the Stanford Real Estate Hall of Fame. In 2011, he founded the first of three sports-related charitable partnerships. These are Touchdown for Kids with the San Francisco 49ers, Hoops for Kids with the Golden State Warriors and Goals for Kids with the San Jose Sharks. In 2007 and 2013, Tad was recognized by The Forward, the most widely read Jewish newspaper, as one of the 50 most influential Jews in the U.S. Tad received the Commander’s Cross, the highest civilian medal from the president of the Republic of Poland in 2004 and in 2015, he received the Presidential Medal of Freedom.