Join us to celebrate Bob's life
Friday, September 5
The Great Hall
Town Hall Seattle
1119 8th Ave, Seattle
In lieu of flowers, Bob’s family suggests donations in Bob’s memory to Childhaven, an organization founded by his brother Patrick Gogerty and dedicated to providing therapeutic treatment for the youngest victims of abuse and neglect.
Bob Gogerty loved people. And he loved Seattle. These are among the things that drove him to work so hard for the betterment of “his” city, along with the people here and elsewhere.
Bob embraced his rough beginning in a home troubled by alcoholism and disarray, using it as a pillar to inspire his success. He believed in unlocking the mind and allowing big, visionary ideas to flow freely. He also believed in working hard and strategically to realize a vision. Doing so, he knew, would ultimately lead to breaking down limitations to achieving great things for people and communities.
Perhaps most remarkable about Bob was his ability to analyze complicated issues and create strategies and communications that focused on the simple, key elements leading to a solution.
The Forward Thrust ballot initiatives changed the face of Seattle in the 1960s. Reopening Pine Street to traffic spurred the resurgence of the downtown retail core. Passing an initiative to create Sound Transit helped get us moving. Helping with the remodeling of the Seattle Center Coliseum and spearheading the campaigns for Safeco Field and CenturyLink Field created professional sports venues of which we could be proud. Moving onto a national stage, Bob created groundbreaking campaigns for the Pickens Plan and AT&T using topflight teams assembled from around the country.
Among his friends, Bob counted titans of business, industry, politics and social services, as well as others such as the homeless woman in Washington, D.C. he befriended on his morning walks and helped with simple kindness, warm winter clothing, and money for food.
His work and his life touched, and will continue to touch, millions of people. Along the way he created and sustained enduring friendships, mentored colleagues and competitors, always maintained perspective and did so with grace and good humor. He was generous with his time and expertise, providing free counsel to causes such as Bailey-Boushay House and many others.
Bob bounced around several Seattle high schools (he proudly displayed a letter in his office from Seattle Prep threatening his dismissal) and at age 16, Bob joined the Marine Corps using a letter from his mother and a birth certificate claiming he was actually 17. After his time in the Marines, which he credited with correcting his course in life, Bob became bored with college and joined his brother Pat Gogerty at the Luther Burbank School where he worked counseling emotionally disturbed children. Pat would go on to found Childhaven, a revolutionary social service childcare agency.
Bob spent some time as a driver for United Parcel Service before becoming involved in politics. He was deputy mayor under close friend Wes Uhlman, Seattle’s youngest mayor, and helped Uhlman withstand a punishing recall election. In 1978, Bob founded Gogerty & Stark with former city Budget Director Don Stark. David Marriott joined the firm in 1997.
For those of us lucky enough to have known Bob, his loss is devastating. But we can take solace in the good fortune of having known and worked with the best, and to have helped achieve great things with a tremendous friend and colleague.