In Memoriam: John H. Streicker

March 14, 2022

A longtime member of the Graduate Center Foundation Board and a champion of affordable housing for students and faculty, he will be deeply missed.

Elenor and John Streicker holding an award
John H. Streicker (right) with his daughter Eleanor, a Hunter College graduate, at the dedication of Streicker Hall in 2017.

The Graduate Center Foundation and the Graduate Center community deeply mourn the passing of John H. Streicker. A member of the Graduate Center Foundation Board from 2000 to 2021 and a generous contributor to the Graduate Center, he died on March 10, 2022, at age 79. 

During his long service on the Graduate Center Foundation Board, Streicker contributed his real estate expertise and generous financial support to provide students with sorely needed residences. His vision and generosity led to the opening of the Graduate Center Apartments complex on CUNY’s East Harlem campus in 2011, a project nine years in the making. Since then, the building has been a haven for hundreds of graduate students, faculty, and advisers. The complex was named Streicker Hall in 2017 in honor of his philanthropy and leadership. The hall is also dedicated to his daughter Eleanor, a Hunter College graduate and advocate of sustainable development.  

Streicker family at a GC event
John H. Streicker (center) surrounded by family members at the dedication of Streicker Hall on November 25, 2017. 

At the November 2017 dedication ceremony, Graduate Center President Chase F. Robinson observed, “From 2000 through today and into the future, John has really been essential in advancing the Graduate Center’s real estate development initiatives.”  

Streicker received an honorary doctorate from the Graduate Center at its 2011 commencement.  A citation read at the ceremony lauded him as a “driving force of a worldwide real estate corporation and gifted philanthropist” who personified “a style of wide-ranging social responsibility that willingly assumes obligations and generously seeks to serve the many communities of which you are a part.” 

A graduate of Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs and Yale Law School, Streicker left the field of law for the world of investment and joined Sentinel Real Estate Corporation in 1976. Through his leadership, as president and CEO and subsequently as board chairman, Sentinel grew to manage millions of dollars in real estate assets, including tens of thousands of apartments and millions of square feet of commercial properties.

In addition to his service to the Graduate Center, he chaired Manhattan’s Community Board 5 and served on the President’s Foreign Intelligence Advisory Board from 2001 to 2005. He taught at Yale University’s School of Organization and Management and served on the board of the Yale Law School Fund. He is credited as the founder of the U.S.-based Australia Wildlife Foundation and was a longtime member of its board.  

He is fondly remembered by many at the Graduate Center as the chief champion of affordable housing for students and faculty during his more than two decades of service to the school.