Lowell Harwood, 85, of Short Hills died March 18, 2015. He was born in Newark and raised in Jersey City.
Mr. Harwood built and grew the family parking business that had begun in 1920, breaking into the New York market. The company went public in 1969, with Harwood becoming chair of Square Industries, Inc., headquartered in Jersey City. By the time the company was sold in 1997, the family operation had grown to a $100-million business with 135 locations across the United States. During his leadership of Square Industries, the company managed parking at the 1980 Winter Olympics in Lake Placid, NY. After selling the company, he continued running Harwood Properties LLC, a private parking and property management company that continues to be managed by the Harwood family in Jersey City.
He graduated from Kent State University.
He served in the U.S. Army during the Korean War.
A pillar of the Jersey City business community, he served on the board of the city’s Chamber of Commerce, and as its president in 1958. In 1997, the Harwood family purchased the site of the former State Theater and created the first new residential development in Journal Square in more than 50 years, helping to transform the area. He was also involved in numerous parking business associations, serving on the board of directors of the National, Metropolitan and New York parking associations.
A philanthropist in Jersey City and throughout New Jersey, he was a dedicated supporter of Christ Hospital, serving on the board of trustees, executive board, and Christ Hospital Foundation board for 40 years. While on the Foundation board, he donated funds to establish the Harwood Heart Center, a state-of-the-art coronary care unit, which continues to bear his name.
His philanthropy included more than 10 years of service as a Kean University trustee and trustee emeritus. As trustee, he implemented numerous campus improvement projects and donated a stained-glass window that remains the centerpiece of the Kean Hall Conference Center. He also founded the university’s Gala Event in 1997, which raised more than $1.4 million over seven years for the school’s scholarship fund, a cause for which he was very passionate. In recognition of his service to Kean, he was named its ‘Man of the Year’ at the university’s sixth annual gala in 2003. Kean’s Harwood Arena is also named after him.
He was a member of Temple Beth El in Jersey City for more than 50 years, and a member of the American Israel Public Affairs Committee.
He is survived by his wife, Toby; his children, Leslie and Craig; a brother, Sanford; and three grandchildren.
Services were held March 20 with arrangements by Bernheim-Apter-Kreitzman Suburban Funeral Chapel, Livingston. Memorial contributions may be made to Kean University.