Obituary: RICHARD C. GOODWIN
February 5, 1928 – June 24, 2022
Richard C. Goodwin, beloved husband, father and Granddad, citizen of the world, passed on to that great golf course in the sky on June 24, 2022. Snug in his stateroom bed, rocked by the sea as he sailed toward Ireland, his wife sat by his side holding his hand until he drew his final breath. She described his death as a peaceful, beautiful moment. He died just as he wished, at sea, with the woman he loved while traveling the world.
Born in Philadelphia, PA on February 5, 1928, the third son of Naval Academy graduate, Harry J. Goodwin and his wife Kathryn (Gottlieb), he joined a family on the move. He attended nine different junior and senior high schools.
In 1948, Goodwin graduated Drexel University with a Bachelor of Science degree in Commerce and Engineering. By 1950, joining his father and brother, he began constructing single family homes in Cherry Hill, NJ. By the 1960’s they formed Goodwin Enterprises, building sewer and water companies and neighborhood shopping centers and developing raw land.
Ramblewood on the Green, the company’s major project, broke ground in Mt. Laurel Township, NJ in 1960. Beginning with single family homes built adjacent to Ramblewood Country Club and golf course, townhouses, apartments and condominiums soon followed.
Over several decades, Goodwin Enterprises built more than 5,000 homes and apartments, as well as developing 15,000 lots for other builders. In the 1970’s, the company expanded into southeastern PA building 600 HUD townhouses and 400 conventional apartments.
Goodwin served both his local and state Home Builder Associations as President and the National Association of Home Builders as Vice President. He was a founder of the National Housing Endowment.
Goodwin created the Ethel Laurel Endowment at Rutgers University Law School honoring the “Mount Laurel Decision” that spread affordable housing throughout America.
As Chairman and Founder of the Middle East Peace Dialogue Network, Inc (MEPDN), he invested in finding solutions to peaceful co-existence between Israelis and Palestinians since the early 1980’s.
“Many countries have war departments and defense departments. You don’t hear much about peace departments. Peace is much more difficult than war,” Goodwin liked to say. But he was an ardent believer in peaceful co-existence and has supported more than 75 Jewish and Palestinian organizations that promote dialogue, cooperation and tolerance. His personal anthem was John Lennon’s “Imagine”.
In addition, Goodwin was Chairman and Founder of the Goodwin Foundation, supporting more than 100 organizations and institutions throughout the US. He was a founder of the Goodwin Holocaust Museum of Delaware Valley, the Goodwin Holocaust Education Center in Cherry Hill, NJ and the National Liberty Museum in Philadelphia, PA.
Goodwin is the benefactor of the Goodwin College of Professional Studies at Drexel University, which awarded him an Honorary Doctorate of Humane Letters in 2004 to recognize his many professional and philanthropic achievements.
A long-time fundraiser for the United Way of Burlington County, NJ, Goodwin also raised more than $1 million for prostate cancer research. He was the benefactor of the Richard C. Goodwin Daycare Center at the Maasai Heritage Foundation in Kenya, Africa.
However, his love of snow skiing inspired him to relocate to Snowmass Village, CO where he resided for more than 30 years, skiing well into his 80’s. He dreamed of making Snowmass the greenest village in America, supporting the work of CORE and even retrofitting his own home for maximum energy conservation.
He is survived by his wife, Susan Nitsch, his daughter, Joanna Goodwin (Mark Friedman), his sons, John and Robert Goodwin. His grandchildren Hal Goodwin (Nikki), Abigail Edelman (Landon Toma), and Megan Edelman, and his three great-granddaughters, Ruth and Eleanor Goodwin and Willa Toma.
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