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Bram Goldsmith is chairman emeritus of City National Bank. He has played a key role at City National since 1964, when he was first elected to the bank’s board of directors.
Mr. Goldsmith served as chairman of City National Corporation from 1975 to 2013 and as chairman and chief executive officer of both the bank and the corporation from 1975 to 1995. He led the company’s evolution into California’s Premier Private and Business Bank® and also spearheaded the bank’s expansion into San Diego and Ventura counties. Under Mr. Goldsmith’s leadership, the company’s assets rose from $600 million to $3.3 billion. City National Bank now has assets of $35.6 billion and operates 75 offices in Southern California, the San Francisco Bay Area, Nevada, New York City, Nashville, and Atlanta.
Before joining City National, Mr. Goldsmith served for 25 years as president and chief executive officer of Buckeye Realty and Management Corporation, at the time the largest privately owned commercial real estate development company in Southern California. He also was chairman of Buckeye Construction Company.
In 1942, after attending the University of Illinois, where he studied finance and business administration, Mr. Goldsmith joined the Army Air Corps and served for 3½ years. He spent 18 months on duty in Burma.
Mr. Goldsmith always has been active in civic and philanthropic affairs. He served as president of the Jewish Federation Council of Greater Los Angeles in 1969 and 1970, and chaired the 1965 Los Angeles United Jewish Fund Campaign. He also was a national chairman of the United Jewish Appeal from 1970 to 1974 and continues to serve as a life trustee.
Mr. Goldsmith was a board member of the Cedars-Sinai Medical Center from 1979 to 1999 and is a lifetime trustee. He served as president of Hillcrest Country Club from 1972 to 1975. He also is a lifetime trustee of the Los Angeles Philharmonic Association and has served on its board of directors since 1977. Mr. Goldsmith was a board member of the Los Angeles Branch of the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco from 1981 to 1987.
Mr. Goldsmith is a former board member and the Los Angeles chairman of the National Conference of Christians and Jews. He also is a former chairman of the board of Region IV of the United Way and a member of its Central Board. In addition, he is the Founding Chairman of the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts, which privately raised funds to convert the old Beverly Hills Post Office into the Wallis Annenberg Center for the Performing Arts and build the 500-seat Bram Goldsmith Theater adjacent to the present structure. In February 2013, he stepped down as chairman but continues to be an active member of the its Board of Directors.Mr. Goldsmith is a former chairman of American Friends of the Weizmann Institute of Science and former deputy chairman of the institute’s International Board of Governors. He continues to serve on the organization’s board of directors.