Thomas N. Ruth, 75, foundation head

February 04, 2006

Thomas Nelson Ruth, a retired World Bank consultant and Baltimore foundation manager, died of cancer Sunday at a hospital in Carmel Valley, Calif. The former Bethesda resident was 75.

Mr. Ruth was born in Baltimore and raised in Roland Park. He was a 1948 graduate of Phillips Exeter Academy in Exeter, N.H., and earned a bachelor's degree from Haverford College.

He joined the Army in 1953, and after studying Chinese at its language school in Monterey, Calif., was assigned to the Navy as a translator.

After leaving the service, Mr. Ruth remained in San Francisco, where he worked for several years for Diebold Inc. and Burlington Industries. He moved to Washington, D.C., when he became a World Bank management consultant in 1963.

He retired in 1981 and briefly sold real estate and managed the Family Support Foundation in Baltimore.

The foundation, which provided social services to low-income and troubled youths, was established by his brother-in-law, Arthur W. Sherwood, also founder of the Chesapeake Bay Foundation.

Since 1990, Mr. Ruth had lived in Carmel Valley. He was an avid tennis player, golfer and world traveler.

A memorial gathering will be held at 1 p.m. Feb. 25 at his home.

Surviving are his wife of 48 years, the former Virginia Pioda; two sons, Michael DeC. Ruth of Redlands, Calif., and Jonathan P. Ruth of San Francisco; a daughter, Laurence Anne Ruth of Pikesville; two sisters, Suzanne R. Sherwood of Baltimore and Elizabeth R. Cleaver of Providence, R.I.; and seven grandchildren.

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