Richmond Art Center Richmond Art Center

In Memoriam: Michael Stephens, Brilliant Grant Writer to Many

In Memoriam: Michael Stephens

With heavy hearts, we bid farewell to Michael Stephens, a grant-writing extraordinaire whose wit, wisdom, and unwavering dedication to nonprofits enriched the lives of many. Michael passed away peacefully last week in Oregon, leaving behind a legacy that spans decades and touches countless people.

A longtime resident of Point Richmond, Michael’s career in grant writing spanned nearly 50 years. His expertise and passion for the arts were evident in his work with the Taos, NM Museum, Cal Shakes, The Berkeley Rep, Stagebridge, Opera Parallele, and Richmond Art Center, to name just a few. His efforts were instrumental in securing funding for these organizations during extremely challenging times.

I had the pleasure of working closely with Michael at Stagebridge and Richmond Art Center, where his presence was indispensable. His brilliance shone through in his work, but it was his humor and lovable curmudgeon ways that endeared him to all who knew him.

Michael is survived by his son and grandchildren in Austin, Texas. He will be deeply missed by his family, friends, and all who had the privilege of knowing him. As we reflect on his life and legacy, let us remember Michael for the laughter, light, and love he brought into the world of nonprofits and all who benefited from it. Rest in peace, dear friend.

José Rivera, Executive Director

Top image: Michael Stephens (right) with Sadie Harmon


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Richmond, CA 94804-1600


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