April 19, 1940 - December 17, 2015
Columbus and the world lost a bright light with the passing of Bill Goldman. Bill’s deep, wide chest held a heart that always had room for one more person. There was no one who met Bill that didn’t recognize and respond to his quick wit, compassionate nature and propensity for corny jokes. Born in Akron, Ohio, Bill was a much-loved only child who grew up the apple of his mother’s eye, Julia Rae, an elocution teacher. His father was a cello player for the Pittsburg Symphony, as well as an enterprising entrepreneur. He died just six months before Bill graduated from The Ohio State University Law School, but no doubt breathed a father’s sigh of relief that his rambunctious son had found his calling. In 1966, Bill joined his first law firm, Dreisbach, Crabbe, Newlon, Bilger, Brown & James. He eventually left the firm to serve as general counsel for the Homewood Corporation, and was instrumental in Homewood’s expansion into Columbus, Texas and Puerto Rico. For several years, Bill’s lively imagination and intelligence led him to explore a number of entrepreneurial ventures, but eventually he returned to the law that the loved. In 1999, Bill set up what was to become a fortuitous partnership with Michael Braunstein, Professor Emeritus at The Ohio State University. Together, Goldman & Braunstein cut a brilliant swath through the field of eminent domain, defending Ohio property owners faced with the threat of losing their land to powerful pipeline companies. The two became far more than business partners; they became best friends, as well. Bill was just as comfortable in a room full of flannel-shirted farmers as he was in a court of law. His deep, baritone voice and expansive expertise assured landowners that he and his partner could “level the playing field.” And level it they did. Standing alongside landowners became more than Goldman’s livelihood; it became his mission and his passion. With the steadfast support of his beloved paralegal, Sherry Evanichko, and the team at Crabbe, Brown & James, today Goldman & Braunstein is widely recognized as the leading eminent domain firm in the Midwest. Outside his profession, he mixed deep, treasured relationships forged over 50 years with newer, equally meaningful, friendships. He found happiness with his wife, Joanna, a union that has endured for the last 25 years. Both enjoyed spending time with family and their loving, multi-generational friends, traveling, reading and debating everything from politics to the weather. On Ohio State game days, there wasn’t a more ardent fan or scathing couch-coach than Bill. The Buckeyes were his pride (and frustration), but he remained forever loyal and demanded the same from his five grandchildren. In recent years, Bill and Joanna enjoyed time in their home in California with the family they treasured above all else: Kimberly (Goldman) and Javier Garcia, Shelby and Beth Goldman, grandkids Tyler, Madeleine Rose, Vincent, Julia and Will, beloved sister-in-law Betty Larson, and faithful dogs, Teddy and Winston. Bill’s spirit and passion embraced his community. He devoted countless hours serving on the Boards of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Columbus, Franklin County Veterans Memorial and The Columbus Zoo. He and Joanna founded Wine for Wildlife, a charitable auction that has raised more than $1.2 million for the Zoo’s worldwide conservation efforts. Bill filled his six-foot-three frame with optimism, boundless energy and a voice that commanded your attention. He spoke his mind, sometimes bluntly, nearly always eloquently and passionately. He was a friend everyone could count on, loyal, kind and compassionate. He touched the lives of thousands during his 75 years and was loved and admired by countless clients, colleagues and friends. He will never be forgotten. A Celebration of an Extraordinary Life will be held January 8th at the Ivory Room, 2 Miranova Place, 6th floor, Columbus, OH, beginning at 11 AM.
Columbus and the world lost a bright light with the passing of Bill Goldman. Bill’s deep, wide chest held a heart that always had room for one more person. There was no one who met Bill that didn’t recognize and respond to his quick... View Obituary & Service Information
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