Arnold H. Snider ’66, a college trustee whose term ended in 2012, died Jan. 3 in New York City after being diagnosed in September with a rare and aggressive form of soft-tissue sarcoma.
“We are so grateful for Arnie’s life, for the way he represented the ideals of Davidson in the world and for the many ways he supported Davidson in his lifetime,” said President Carol Quillen. “He was a humble, generous, purposeful man, who will be missed by many Davidson friends.”
As a student, Snider was a member of the staff of Quips and Cranks, Pi Kappa Alpha fraternity, and the Student Government Association, and was recognized for his leadership and academic abilities through membership in Omicron Delta Epsilon, Omicron Delta Kappa, Who’s Who Among Students in American Universities and Colleges and with an ROTC Commission.
He received an M.B.A. from the Darden School of Business at the University of Virginia and later served two years in the U.S. Army. He then went to New York City, where he was very successful in the world of finance. He and his wife, Kit, made their home in Princeton, N.J., where they raised their family. Later, they divided their time between Princeton and a home in the city.
In 2005, Snider served on the Davidson College Board of Trustees at the request of President Bobby Vagt ’69, with whom he worked closely on diversity scholarship issues. During the administration of Tom Ross ’72, Snider chaired the board’s Investment Committee, where his leadership was crucial to Davidson during the financial crisis of 2008, in the difficult years following, and through the opening years of President Carol Quillen’s administration.
Snider had a successful Wall Street career as a pharmaceutical analyst with Kidder, Peabody and Co., and as managing director at Tiger Management before founding Deerfield Management. Deerfield is a New York-based hedge fund with an emphasis on health care and life sciences companies, where Snider served as general partner until his retirement.
His lifelong interest in better health for all found expression in his co-founding with Kit, in honor of her mother, the Mary Kirkland Center for Lupus Research at Hospital for Special Surgery. They also established the Kirkland Scholar Program, to advance innovative and collaborative lupus research throughout the country. Snider also served as vice chairman of the board of the Christopher and Dana Reeve Foundation.
The foundation cited his deep understanding of scientific research investment and non-profit health research, as well as his awareness of the importance of innovative thinking in healthcare research.
In October 2008, Snider joined the board of directors of N30 Pharma, a biopharmaceutical company doing research on the treatment of cystic fibrosis and other cardiopulmonary diseases.
Snider brought the same spirit of innovation to his affirmation of the need for Americans to support education of the nation’s minority populations. In his own Davidson philanthropy, notably the The Davidson Trust and the Snider Scholars Program, he carefully included an inflation component to scholarship structures. He also was a strong proponent of the college’s initiatives to ensure that Davidson students with extreme financial need and perhaps other, related academic and social needs, do not “fall between the cracks.”
“Not only was Arnie Davidson-smart, but he was organized, conscientious and methodical,” recalled his college roommate John Clark ’66, who remained a lifelong friend. “He was a stickler for details. He understood how to set goals and to then achieve them in the most efficient and effective way possible. Through the years, what impressed me most about Arnie was his empathy and his compassion for humankind.”
Snider is survived by his twin brother Britt ’66, his wife, Kit, daughter, Sarah, son, Ned, and three grandchildren. He was predeceased by his sister, Kay. Condolences may be sent to Britt Snider, 6030 Chesterbrook Road, McLean, VA 22101, or to Mrs. Katherine M. Snider (Kit),18 Foulet Drive Princeton, NJ 08540.
Arnie and Britt Snider were not only twins and classmates—for 69 years, they also were the closest of friends. Britt Snider expressed gratitude for many kind expressions following his brother’s short illness and death.
“Time to focus on Arnie and celebrate what was a wonderful person he was!” Britt Snider said.
A funeral service will be held at 2 p.m., Jan. 11, at the Princeton University Chapel, in Princeton, NJ. A reception will follow.