The Hun School is deeply saddened to report the recent passing of Trustee Emeritus Thomas Horwich ’59. Mr. Horwich, a Chicago native, attended The Hun School for three years, during which time he was an active member of the School. As Student Council president his senior year, he organized a committee to investigate the possibility of instituting a Hun Honor System, which was introduced the year after he graduated and was the beginning of the School’s current Honor Council and System. He also lettered twice each in varsity tennis and varsity basketball, served on The Mall staff, and captained varsity basketball.
When Mr. Horwich graduated Hun in 1959, he noted that he “left thinking that he would probably not see The Hun School again,” largely due to the 1,000-mile distance from his home. Luckily, this was not to be the case.
Mr. Horwich served as a Hun Fund class agent and a special reunion ambassador for his 50th Reunion in 2009, the same year he received Hun’s Distinguished Alumnus Award. The following year, he joined the Board of Trustees, serving until 2019. He had the longest “commute” to Hun, often traveling from Chicago for Board meetings, Commencement, class visits, and other functions. During his tenure, the real estate powerhouse shared his expertise as a member of the Real Estate and Facilities Committee. In addition, Mr. Horwich sponsored three Chicago-area Hun students through the Daniel Murphy Scholarship Fund. As a trustee of the scholarship fund, he facilitated Hun’s relationship with the organization, but he also went beyond that, offering ongoing personal care and support for the students by taking them out when he was in Princeton, meeting with them in Chicago, and supporting their college aspirations. In 2020, the Board unanimously voted to name Mr. Horwich a Trustee Emeritus.
“I was very flattered when I was asked to serve on the Board of Trustees,” he wrote to Head of School Jonathan Brougham upon receiving the news, adding “to say the least, The Hun School had a very lasting impression on my life after graduation.”
Mr. Horwich received a B.S. in Economics and Real Estate/Marketing from the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School. This led to his long career in industrial real estate, starting in the 1970s. With his partners Podolsky and Associates, he built over two-million square feet of industrial properties in and around Chicago. In the 1980s, he formed Horwich Enterprises, which managed several downtown Chicago office buildings and completed more industrial development. In 1996, Mr. Horwich and a partner purchased the residential component of Rubloff, Inc., growing it from one office to seven with more than $1 billion in annual sales. In 2009, Prudential Preferred Properties and Rubloff Residential Properties merged to form Prudential Rubloff Properties, with Mr. Horwich on the leadership team.
Throughout his life, Mr. Horwich was dedicated to community service, largely centered on organizations that benefit children. In addition to Hun, he served on the boards of the Jewish Children’s Bureau and the Jewish Federation of Metropolitan Chicago. Also close to his heart was the Western Golf Association, which administers the Evans Scholars Foundation, for which he was a director and executive committee member for more than three decades.
An avid golfer, Mr. Horwich recalled that one of the highlights of his golfing career was the eighteen holes he played with Tiger Woods, followed closely by a round he played with his former Hun basketball teammate James M. Byer ’62, former Hun Headmaster (1994–2009), during a Hun Reunion in Chicago.
“Tom showed his love for Hun and its students in every action and word,” said Mr. Brougham. “He was reverent and knowledgeable about the school’s history yet intent on charting new ideas and opportunities. As a dedicated alumnus with deep institutional knowledge, his passing is a huge loss for the School.”
Mr. Horwich is survived by his wife, Vicki; two children, Jamie and Douglas; and two grandchildren, Lyla and Zoe.