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Santa Rosa Symphony's Tribute to Don Green


A powerhouse who shaped the telecommunications industry, esteemed entrepreneur Don Green made a significant, lasting impact on Sonoma County. Credited as the North Bay’s “Father of Telecom Valley” and the lead donor (along with his beloved wife Maureen) for the Donald and Maureen Green Music Center at Sonoma State University, Don enjoyed a storied life and career.

A man of humility, Don was widely known for his philanthropy and community service, supporting numerous charities, highlighted by his gifts to the musical world in Sonoma County.

Gaye LeBaron, Santa Rosa Press Democrat columnist and leading Sonoma County historian, recounts the enormous impact Don has had on the musical arts in the North Bay.

“Every now and again a community gets lucky. Something happens or someone comes along that changes the daily life in positive ways for many of the residents. In Sonoma and surrounding counties, those ‘someones’ were Don and Maureen Green. They loved to sing, helped found the Sonoma Bach Choir, and with other music-lovers, joined the general lament of the lack of a performance hall with excellent acoustics. When the Santa Rosa Symphony began talking of a permanent home, the Greens were the first in the support line. Their donation of $10 million started the 15-year journey to the opening of the complex that bears their name. Lucky? The word is not nearly powerful enough to describe the day Don Green arrived.”
Don joined then-SSU president Ruben Armiñana and Corrick Brown, former music director of the Santa Rosa Symphony, to launch a fundraising campaign. Welcomed into a hundred-plus homes to describe the project’s vision and secure funding, they were delighted when more than 1,600 donors responded. The result is Weill Hall - one of the most acoustically perfect concert venues in the world - where the Santa Rosa Symphony now calls home as its resident orchestra.

Less known but equally valued was Don’s years of support of an annual choral series by the Santa Rosa Symphony with the Sonoma Bach Choir followed by a major donation to the Symphony’s endowment fund that ensures its annual performance of a choral themed classical concert set in the Green Music Center in perpetuity.

“During my 20 years here, I have never met a more humble man with such wit, charm and grace coupled by enormous generosity and vision,” says President & CEO Alan Silow.  The Santa Rosa Symphony – its musicians, board members, management and patrons - are enormously grateful for Don Green’s many contributions, which will endure for generations to come.




Photo credit: Don Green

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Phone:  (707) 546-7097

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