ULI San Francisco Blog

ULI SF Remembers and Pays Tribute to Bob Thompson

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It is with great sadness that we share the news of the passing of long-time member and former ULI SF Chair Robert Thompson on July 29th. He was 74.

Bob’s intellect and calm resolve facilitated his steely devotion to the public interest, which led to projects and accomplishments that went beyond the bottom line to strengthen the fabric of our communities. As conveyed beautifully in the tribute released by Sheppard Mullin, Bob personified the values and dedication of ULI SF to responsible land use and development of great cities that are economically vibrant, livable and delightful for all.

Bob was heavily involved with ULI throughout his career, serving as ULI SF chair from 2005 to 2008. Thompson also founded the ULI SF Policy & Practice Committee and was an active member of ULI SF’s Governance Committee and Public Private Partnership Council.

Thompson was a member of Sheppard Mullin’s Real Estate, Land Use and Environmental practice group and was based in the firm’s San Francisco office. He handled a broad range of commercial real estate issues including investment, development, leasing, financing and land-use approvals for master planned projects. Bob specialized in crafting public-private partnerships and was nationally recognized for his work on several bar association task forces setting standards for legal opinion practice.

Bob received a J.D. from Harvard Law School in 1969 and a B.A. from Stanford University in 1965. Thompson worked on several significant projects throughout the city. His most recent projects included the Kaiser Permanente Geary Boulevard campus and the Macy’s redevelopment at Union Square.

“I am deeply saddened by the news of Bob’s passing.  Bob was a kind and compassionate leader, a masterful land use attorney, and a mentor to me personally.  We will all miss his presence, spirit and leadership at ULI, and we send our deepest sympathies to his family,” said ULI SF Chair Kim Diamond.

Former ULI SF Board Chair Rick Dishnica added, “I met Bob in the 70’s when he represented a borrower in a workout with a bank.  He so impressed me that I asked him to represent our company in the 80’s.  It was then that I got to know him personally and realized what an extraordinary individual he was.  My most enjoyable memory of Bob was our work together at ULI.  He preceded me as chair of the SFDC and with his guidance and insight he made me a better chair.  We will all miss his dedication and spirit!”

There are no details yet of a service, but his family has identified three organizations if you would like to make contributions in Bob’s name:

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