The Institution has received word of the death August 4, 2005 of
Honorary Member of the Corporation Charles A. Black at his home in
Woodside, CA of complications from a bone narrow disease. He was 86.
Charles “Charlie” Black was elected a Member of the Corporation in 1977 and an Honorary Member in 1989, served on
the Development Committee, and was a member of the
Charles Alden Black was born March 6, 1919 in Oakland, California, a descendant of John Alden of the Mayflower
and the Cherokee Indian chief Oconostota. He was raised in San
Francisco, attended the Hotchkiss School in Connecticut, and received bachelor’s and master’s degrees in business from Stanford
University. He also attended Harvard University. He joined the U.S. Navy in 1941 as an intelligence officer
in the Pacific, making more than 100 PT boat patrols and serving as a scout behind enemy lines in Indonesia, earning the Silver
Star and other honors for valor.
After the war, he moved to Tahiti and eventually sailed a small boat
back to the United States. He was working in Hawaii for a shipping
company in 1950 when he met former
child star Shirley Temple, who was vacationing there, at a party. The
couple married that same year.
During the 1950s, after returning to the Navy during the Korean War as
an intelligence officer, Charles Black worked as an executive at
Stanford Research International and the AMPEX Corporation but soon
began focusing his interests in aquaculture. He loved the sea, and his
long business career was focused on
maritime ventures. He was a pioneer in marine and freshwater
aquaculture, starting a fishing and hatchery company for oysters and
abalone in California in
the early 1960s and working as a consultant in maritime issues. He was
the founder and president of Mardela Corporation and founder of Pacific
Mariculture, Inc. He had
extensive experience in marine resource assessment and related onshore
infrastructure, in marine territorial boundaries, and in
operating both commercial and research fishing vessels. He
also served as chairman of the Marquest Group, Inc., which was founded
WHOI scientist Robert Ballard and others after the discovery
of the wreck of the Titanic in 1985.
Active beyond the business community, Charles Black served as a delegate to
the United Nations Law of the Sea
negotiations and the United Nations International Maritime Consultative
Organizations. He also served on many advisory committees, including
the Ocean and Atmosphere Management Advisory Committee at the U.S.
Department of Commerce, the Marine Fisheries Advisory Committee, the
National Advisory Commission on Oceans and Atmosphere, the
Committee on Alternative Uses of Naval Technology and the Committee on
Fisheries of the Ocean Studies Board, National Research Council.
He was a trustee
of the University of Santa Clara and a member of the board of the
College of Notre Dame.
Charles Black is survived by his wife, Shirley Temple Black, of
Woodside, CA; a brother, James Black, Jr. of San Mateo, CA; a son,
Charles Black, Jr. of San Francisco, CA; two daughters, Lori Black of
San Francisco and Susan Falaschi of Menlo Park, CA; and a
granddaughter, Teresa Falaschi of Menlo Park, CA.
At his request there will be no service.