OBITUARY

Stanford J. Alexander

August 15, 1928June 28, 2022
Obituary of Stanford J. Alexander
Stanford Alexander, 93, passed away at his home on Tuesday, the 28th of June. He was guided by an incredible moral compass in every aspect of life. He was an industry pioneer, tireless advocate, community leader, cherished friend; and above all, devoted and loving husband, father, grandfather, great-grandfather, uncle, cherished mentor and friend. Stanford was born and raised in Houston, attending San Jacinto High School, on to the University of Texas at Austin, and then to Harvard Business School followed by service in the U.S. Air Force. Throughout his young life, he was involved in the family business, Weingarten’s grocery stores. After the Air Force, he returned home to Houston and his family's growing supermarket chain business. He began working in its new real estate enterprise, Weingarten Markets Realty. Stanford's job was to find locations for Weingarten grocery stores as well as tenants that would complement their stores. One of Stanford’s strengths was his ability to identify strong retailers before mainstream national developers noticed them. The relationships he built through loyalty to clients served Weingarten Realty well. In 1984, Weingarten Realty restructured as a real estate investment trust and, after going public, quickly became one of the largest equity REITs listed on the New York Stock Exchange. One of the greatest joys of Stanford’s life was his partnership with his son Drew, who joined him at Weingarten, eventually succeeding him as CEO in 2001. Family was the center of gravity in Stanford’s life. When Stanford married Joan Greenberg 68 years ago, it was the beginning of an enduring love story and a remarkable partnership in love and life. Everything they did, they did as a team. Together, they made sure that quality time remained at the foundation of their family life. Sunday dinners with cuts of steak fresh from Weingarten’s butcher were a regular feature of life growing up for his children: Drew Alexander and his wife, Julie; Ilene Alexander, and Eric Alexander, of blessed memory. His grandchildren, Amy Alexander, Kevin Alexander and his wife Sasha, fondly remember family vacations and wonderful moments of laughter. From weekend excursions to feed ducks at local parks -- interspersed of course with visits to nearby shopping centers -- to exciting trips creating once-in-a-lifetime memories. In his later years, Stanford delighted in watching his great-grandchildren at play -- Darek, Aurora, and Zoë Alexander. Stanford personified tikkun olam, a Jewish concept defined by acts to help repair the universe, not just in his personal life, but as a leader in the community. Stanford set a high moral standard for corporate responsibility and being a good neighbor. He was active in many civic organizations. A few highlights include: Advocating for mental illness, Providing the first space for the Houston Food Bank; developing SEARCH House of Tiny Treasures, the first child care center for homeless children, providing the first location and support for Dress for Success; innovating leading edge programs to advance the inclusion of people with disabilities at Jewish Family Service; championing the State of Israel through vigorous support of AIPAC; and numerous other initiatives which benefit from the work of the foundation he and Joan created. As a testament to his lifelong real estate leadership, he and Joan named the Stanford Alexander Center for Real Estate Excellence at UH Bauer School of Business. His good work was performed quietly and unassumingly, like the man himself. Stanford had a lifelong passion for learning about business, history, Judaism and more. You could not help but to be taken with Stanford Alexander. His warmth and genuineness were endearing and infectious. The importance of personal relationships was a watchword of his professional and private life. He could and would talk to anyone, from politicians to grocery store clerks, from captains of industry to cab drivers. He engaged with them as peers, curious about who they were as people, asking about what mattered to them. When he spoke with a store manager about the performance of their sales -- a crucial part of his business acumen -- it was to compliment their efforts in organizing a display or celebrate a new achievement in sales records. He was unassuming and approachable; he would show an intense focus for the smallest of details, and was always quick with a smile and a kind word. His greatest ambitions were not measured in terms of business milestones or charitable giving, but in treasuring the relationships with everyone who had the good fortune to pass through his life. His memory serves as a blessing for those he touched throughout his life. The family wishes to thank the many caregivers, doctors and nurses who helped to support Stanford through his final years, ensuring his quality of life and supporting his family – most especially Joan. A memorial service is to be conducted at half-past eleven o’clock in the morning on Friday, the 1st of July, in the sanctuary of Congregation Beth Israel, 5600 North Braeswood Blvd in Houston, where Senior David A Lyon and Senior Associate Rabbi Adrienne Scott are to officiate. Kindly note: The family requests those attending the service in-person to please follow COVID19 Guidelines. Please be vaccinated, test prior to service, and wear a mask to the service for the protection of all. For those unable to attend in-person, you may join the livestream of the service by visiting Mr. Alexander’s tribute page at GeoHLewis.com and selecting the “Join Livestream” icon in the “Services” section. Immediately following, all are invited to join the family in a Meal of Condolence in the adjacent Wolff-Toomim Hall. Prior to the service, the family will have gathered for a private interment at Congregation Beth Israel Memorial Garden Cemetery in Houston. In lieu of customary remembrances, please consider memorial contributions to the For the Good of Life Fund for Celebration Company at Jewish Family Service; 4131 S. Braeswood Blvd. Houston, Tx 77025 www.jfshouston.org; The Stanford Alexander Center for Real Estate Excellence at UH Bauer School of Business: Please include Stanford J. Alexander in the memo line P.O Box 867, Houston, TX 77001; The Stanford Alexander Tissue Derivatives Laboratory at M.D Anderson Cancer Center: P.O Box 4486, Houston, TX 77216; or the Joan and Stanford Alexander Division of Geriatric and Palliative Medicine at UTHealth: Department of Internal Medicine 6431 Fannin JJLS80 Houston, Texas 77030. We invite you to take a moment to share fond memories and words of comfort and condolence with his family by selecting the "Add A Memory" icon below.

Show your support

  • DONATIONS

  • For the Good of Life Fund for Celebration Company at Jewish Family Service 4131 S. Braeswood Blvd, Houston, Texas 77025
  • The Stanford Alexander Center for Real Estate Excellence at UH Bauer School of Business The Stanford Alexander Center for Real Estate Excellence at UH Bauer School of Business, P.O Box 867, Houston, Texas 77001
  • The Stanford Alexander Tissue Derivatives Laboratory at M.D Anderson Cancer Center P.O Box 4486, Houston, Texas 77216
  • Division of Geriatric and Palliative Medicine at UT Health: Department of Internal Medicine 6431 Fannin Street, JJLS80, Houston, Texas 77030

Past Services

Friday, July 01, 2022

Memorial Service