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Yale 62

Martin Hale

Martin Hale, of Boston, born January 29, 1941, passed away on August 11, 2022. Tall and witty, kind, gentle, and wise except when behind the wheel of a sports car, beloved father, grandfather and husband, Martin Hale is now racing through the open roads of heaven. Born in New York and raised in New Hampshire, Michigan, and California, Martin attended the Cate School (’58), Yale University (’62), and Harvard Business School (’67).

At Yale, Martin majored in economics and was a member of Jonathan Edwards, as well as the Political Union, S. A. M., and the Economics Club. His plan, as stated in our Class Book, was to enter the brokerage business, and that’s what he did, very successfully.

Known by his children as “Ace of Spies” for his vigilant and discerning mind, Martin served in the Army as a Lieutenant in West Germany (1963-’64). He often mentioned how nicely he lived on a Lieutenant’s salary in post-war Germany and loved his days traveling around Europe in his champagne yellow Porsche 356. After the Business School, Martin joined Putnam Investment Management Company where his deep love of the stock market, growth investing, and mentoring others led him to run the Voyager Fund before becoming the youngest president of the firm and later of its parent company, Marsh McLennan Asset Management. When the management role took him away from investing and required too much time away from family, Martin resigned to join Hellman Jordan Management Company where he remained an active investor until suffering a heart attack in June.

Active on numerous corporate and non-profit boards over his life including Great Lakes Chemical Company, Innospec, The Museum of Fine Arts, Boston and its school, and the Student Conservation Association, Martin was known for his integrity and for being a generous and kind problem solver for people and institutions. He was also an avid art collector, reader, and traveler.

As an example of his service to and impact on a major Boston arts institution, the following note from the MFA about Martin describes his legacy:

Dear Trustees and Advisors,

Martin and Martin (M3) Martha’s Vineyard 2021

We are saddened to share news of the recent passing of Honorary Trustee Martin M. Hale and are keeping the Hale family in our thoughts.Elected to the Board in 1994, Martin was named an Honorary Trustee in 2006. A member of the Audit, Budget and Finance, Building, and Education committees, he was also active at the SMFA, serving as the chair of the Board of Governors from 1995-2000, and then as an SMFA Honorary Governor.

Sandy Moose, president emerita, recalls, “Martin was a wonderful support to me as I stepped into the role of Chair of the Board of Governors of the School. I was grateful for his willingness to be a sounding board and found his comments to be perceptive and insightful. He had a lovely way of being supportive and caring, yet asking challenging questions. Martin was a kind man whose advice was straightforward and always helpful. He possessed both a keen intellect and a gentle spirit that delighted in the creative world and worked to ensure that the work of new generations of artists was welcomed and appreciated. He liked to remind us all that every work of art had been contemporary at the time of its inception.”

Martin and his wife Deborah have been generous to the MFA, gifting works by contemporary photographers, supporting the acquisition of works for the Department of Contemporary Art – particularly pieces by up-and-coming artists – and frequently lending to exhibitions, including “Contemporary Outlook” (2007) “Crafted: Objects in Flux” (2016) and “Endless Feast” (2018) organized in conjunction with the Community Arts Initiative. Through their two foundations, the Martin and Deborah Hale Foundation and the Charles and Carmen DeMora Hale Foundation, they established the Hale Endowment Fund for Contemporary Art and The Deborah and Martin Hale Visiting Artists Fund. In May, the Deborah and Martin Hale Visiting Artist Lecture featured a conversation with artist Vincent Valdez and Philip Guston Now guest curator, Terence Washington, about both Guston and Valdez as artists working to bear witness to the complexities of American life.

The Hales are Distinguished Benefactors and members of the Ross and Sargent Societies. They are also Patron Sponsors, as well as donors to the Dana Farber Cancer Institute, Harvard Art Museums, Martha’s Vineyard Hospital, Memorial Sloan-Kettering Cancer-Center, and the Student Conservation Association.

A graduate of Yale University and Harvard Business School, Martin was the former executive vice president of Hellman, Jordan Management Co., Inc. Prior, he was president and chief executive officer of Marsh & McClennan Asset Management Company.


— Douglas T. (Tim) Hall