Edward (Ned) B. Putnam was born to Alfred and Anne Putnam on September 1, 1953. He was the baby of the family. His sister, Anne, and brother, Alfred, always joked he was his mother’s favorite.
The first word anyone uses to describe Ned is kind. He was known for his gentle nature and quiet charm. With a twinkle in his eye, he loved to make people laugh. He never needed to be the center of attention, yet he was often the glue that connected people. Ned was a gifted business leader and trusted advisor for many clients and family, who depended upon him for investment expertise, and for advice and guidance in many other areas of their lives.
Ned was a devoted husband to Kathy for 28 years. He was proud of his children, Fitzgerald, Emily and Caroline. He was “Papa” to his granddaughters, Beatrix and Amelia. His Saturday morning routine was sitting outside with Bea and Amelia while they explored and collected little treasures. Weekends were also filled with watching Caroline’s soccer games, and weekday lunches with Fitz at the Blue Bell Inn became a staple.
Ned loved to watch Phillies and Sixers games with his daughters, the three of them huddled on the couch, offering running commentary on the achievements and shortcomings of the players. In recent years, Ned added soccer to his repertoire of sports fandom. He became a Premier League devotee, waking up early on weekends to cheer for Tottenham Hotspur.
Ned was a “lifer” at Chestnut Hill Academy, where he played baseball, football and squash. His talent for bringing people together started early, and his house was a gathering place for backyard baseball and swimming. He went on to attend Rollins College, which he always described as “heaven on earth”. He earned a B.A. in History and his M.B.A. from the Rollins Crummer School of Finance. His talent for leadership and his infectious, fun-loving personality earned him many friends at Rollins, where he served as president of his fraternity.
Ned began his career in 1976 at the Provident National Bank Trust Department (now PNC Advisors), where he served as investment unit head for high net worth individuals and families. In 2000, he became a founding partner of NorthStar Asset Management, where he served as chief executive officer. Perhaps Ned’s proudest achievement was his time with TouchPoint Inc. He joined the board of directors of TouchPoint in 1996, and became chairman of the board in 2000. TouchPoint took Ned all over the world, visiting manufacturing facilities, learning about new technologies, and developing relationships in many different countries.
Ned began a love affair with art while in his 30s. Fitz fondly recalls, as a little boy, regular Saturday excursions with his dad to galleries. Art was a shared passion for both Ned and Kathy, who filled their home over the years with artwork that brought joy and beauty into their lives. Ned was a past president of Fleisher Art Memorial, and served on the collections committee of Woodmere Art Museum.
Ned was a part of many different communities. He was a director of The Pennsylvania Warehouse and Safe Deposit Company, a trustee of Chestnut Hill Academy (now Springside Chestnut Hill Academy), and former chairman of the Eastern Pennsylvania Chapter of the Arthritis Foundation. He was a longtime Chevalier du Tastevin, as well as a member of the State in Schuylkill (the Fish House), where he spent many afternoons and evenings overlooking the Delaware River, cooking, eating and drinking with dear friends.
Ned was taken from us suddenly on April 24th, 2021. It was many years too soon, and the world is a less interesting place without him. We are grateful for the time we had with him, and we will cherish every memory. Ned is survived by his wife, Kathy, his daughters, Emily and Caroline, his son, Fitz, daughter-in-law Lauren, granddaughters Beatrix and Amelia, sister, Anne Putnam, and brother and sister-in-law, Alfred and Kathleen Putnam.
To honor Ned’s memory, donations can be made to Woodmere Art Museum (https://woodmereartmuseum.org/donate) or The Gladney Center for Adoption (online at www.iamgladney.org/givenow or checks can be mailed to: Attn: Development, Gladney Center for Adoption, 6300 John Ryan Drive, Fort Worth, TX 76132.)