Max Heller

Max Heller – In Memoriam

In so many ways, Max Heller spent his life making a difference.  He cared about people and about creating quality places for people to enjoy.  As mayor of Greenville, Max was a staunch defender of human rights, working to desegregate all the departments and commissions in the city and to improve treatment of youthful offenders.  He had a vision of revitalizing downtown Greenville as the heart of the community with trees, flowers, businesses and inviting spaces.

In the 1970s, Max worked to secure a Federal Urban Development Grant that made it possible to narrow Main Street and attract the Hyatt and convention center as the anchor of North Main Street.  This public-private partnership, which included assistance from the Community Foundation, began a new era of bringing business to downtown.

Max Heller said “We must care about everybody.”  And his life reflected that conviction.  He served as Chairman of the Board of the Community Foundation in 1985, sharing his vision for Greenville and leadership with the nonprofit community.  Max and Trude also established a donor-advised fund with the Community Foundation, providing resources to support the needs of Greenville.

In 2007, Friends of Max on Main set out to commemorate the life and work of Max Heller with a statue and display.  The Community Foundation supported the project by establishing a donor-advised fund to provide financial accounting for the funds raised by friends and family.  The statue was unveiled in 2009 on Max’s 90th birthday.

Max Heller passed away in June 2011 at the age of 92.  We are blessed that Max made Greenville his home.