T. Gary Rogers, former chairman and CEO of Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream for 30 years, passed away on May 2, 2017.  He also served as a chairman of Safeway Inc., the Federal Reserve Bank of San Francisco, and Levi Strauss & Co.

Mr. Rogers was born in Stockton, Calif., on June 5, 1942 and spent his youth in Marin County. He attained the rank of Eagle Scout in the Boy Scouts of America. In 1963, he graduated with a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of California at Berkeley, where he was on the crew team. He was named UC Berkeley All University Athlete that same year and rowed in the 1964 U.S. Olympic Trials.

In the mid-1960s, Mr. Rogers served a two-year term in the Army as a Lieutenant in the Air Defense Artillery based on Mount Tamalpais, Calif. In 1968, he earned his MBA from Harvard Business School and was honored as a George F. Baker Scholar.

At age 34, Mr. Rogers and his business partner William F. “Rick” Cronk purchased Dreyer’s Grand Ice Cream, a small regional company based in Oakland. Together with Cronk, the men built Dreyer’s into the best-selling ice cream company in the United States. In 2002, Dreyer’s was sold to Nestle. 

According to a statement from his family, Mr. Rogers said the building of the Dreyer’s corporate culture was “the best thing we ever did at the company.” It was a culture based on empowerment; respecting and trusting in the abilities of each individual. Every person felt a personal responsibility to “make a difference.” It made Dreyer’s a coveted place to work. 

Mr. Rogers died while playing tennis at his home in Oakland. He passed away doing what he loved, the family said. 

A resident of Oakland for more than 45 years, Mr. Rogers provided leadership and vision to the city and numerous community organizations. His devotion to the University of California, Berkeley, and its rowing team, and the Lighthouse Community Charter School will remain part of his legacy to the Bay Area. His philanthropic generosity, through the Rogers Family Foundation, will continue to focus on his life-long pursuit of creating and sustaining excellence.
He is survived by his wife of 52 years, Kathleen “Cab” Rogers; sons Andy Rogers (Janine), Matt Rogers (Amy), Brian Rogers (Katie) and John Rogers (Lynnsay); 11 grandchildren; mother, Virginia; and brothers Don Rogers (Judy), Jim Rogers (Sandy).
In lieu of flowers, the family requests that his legacy be recognized through donation to these  organizations:
T. Gary Rogers Endowment Fund for the UC Berkeley Men's Crew

Rogers Family Office
10 Clay Street, Suite 200
Oakland, CA  94607
Lighthouse Community Charter School
Lighthouse Community Charter School
Attn: Jenna Stauffer
444 Hegenberger Road
Oakland, CA  94621
An outdoor memorial service will be held at the T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center on Monday, May 15 at 11:00 a.m. at the T. Gary Rogers Rowing Center, 2999 Glascock St., Oakland. More information will be available on the Rogers Family Foundation website: www.rogersfoundation.org