RIP Howard Stein, benefactor and collector, 1927-2011

Macki with Red Rose, 1989 by Jim Goldberg

Last night Howard Stein, investment guru of Dreyfus Corporation fame, passed away after a stroke at his home in Southampton this week, the New York Times reports. What the Times obituary completely leaves out, however, is the generous support Stein gave to the photography world in the last 13 years of his life, via JGS, Inc., the Joy of Giving Something Foundation. The organization, which he was very involved in, supported individual photographers in the collection, as well as the serial New Photography shows at the Museum of Modern Art, a dvd documentary series and many titles published by Nazraeli Press. The foundation's website hosts the online Forward Thinking Museum and contest, which help drive interest in an obsession of his: the future. He was known to tell young photographers to stop looking back at the past, and only think forward, ahead to the future. The web-only virtual museum is an example of his desire to use 21st century technology to make a difference. According to the website, JGS is working on a new project which will be free for all public schools. The new series will profile individuals who, overcoming adversity in their youth, have emerged as innovators in their chosen professions. "Our aim is to inspire the next generation, as we reach out to an ever-expanding audience." Howard wll be missed. www.jgsinc.org

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