April 14, 2011

Remembering Sidney Harman

[Page: S2442]  GPO's PDF 

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Mr. LEAHY. Mr. President, it was with great sadness that I first received word of the passing of a remarkable man and friend, Sidney Harman. Sidney Harman led a life of passion and commitment, the kind of existence that most of us aspire to. His interests were vast and varied and his sense of possibility unparalleled. With business acumen equal to his mastery of the sciences and his love of the arts, Sidney embraced challenges and faced life head on.

I had the pleasure of knowing Sidney throughout his career as a businessman, entrepreneur, public servant, and philanthropist. He left his distinctive mark on every project he involved himself with and brought his progressive ideas to bear at a critical time in our nation's history. His ability to innovate never waned, creative solutions were a forte of his and he applied them with confidence. His most recent endeavor, to purchase Newsweek and merge it with the online publication the Daily Beast less than a year ago, was initially met with trepidation by print news professionals but has since led to growth for both publications, a typical outcome for a venture championed by Sidney.

Sidney's commitment to the betterment of young lives and society as a whole was evident in his philanthropic pursuits and his involvement with institutions of higher education. In recent years he taught classes in medicine, law, economics, and various other disciplines at the college level. Over the course of his life he supported educational organizations with generous donations. He understood that education is the foundation of a prosperous society and that the enlightenment of young minds is crucial to the success of a nation such as ours.

Along with his wife Jane, Sidney made a home and life here in Washington, DC, and devoted himself to the city and its legacy. A generous supporter of the National Symphony Orchestra, theFolger Shakespeare Library and the Shakespeare Theatre Company, Sidney had a significant impact on the vibrant cultural and artistic scene in the Nation's Capital.

My greatest sympathies are with Jane, his children Barbara, Daniel, and Justine, and all of Sidney's extended family. Sidney touched the lives of many and there is no doubt he will be long-remembered for his innovative mind, his good humor, his energetic outlook, and his years of service.

(Senate - April 13, 2011)

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