On Sunday Oct. 4, San Francisco lost one of its most loved and valued community leaders, Inner Sunset resident Randy Schiller.
For more than 50 years, Randy was a pillar of San Francisco’s LGBTQ community and a leader in local organizing and fundraising, establishing and supporting iconic social spaces, and making other crucial contributions that helped establish the LGBTQ community as a local and national entity of social, cultural, and historical importance.
As proprietor of local production company, Randall Schiller Productions, Randy played a pivotal role in the early years of famous venues such as the I-Beam, Harvey’s, Moby Dick, and the Phoenix, while providing a career start to decades of young professionals. In donating his services to renowned events such as Pink Saturday, Halloween in the Castro, the Folsom Street Fair, the Pride Parade, and the legendary parties at the Galleria Design Center, Randy elevated historically neglected causes, including HIV/AIDS and breast cancer, bringing critical help to countless numbers of people.
An Inner Sunset resident since the 1970s, Randy’s love of community shaped the neighborhood through his leadership in local events, including Inner Sunset Sundays and the Inner Sunset Holiday Party. Through his dedication to the neighborhood, Randy contributed to and reflected the Inner Sunset’s reputation as a vibrant place of community, kindness, and care for one another.
Randy’s retirement years were happy times, during which he enjoyed walking his dog Lizzie around the neighborhood and journeying further afield in his RV, finding relaxation in California’s natural treasures and spending quality time with his family, especially as Papa Randy or Uncle Randy to his many nieces and nephews.
There will never be anyone else like Randy. He was a singular man, full of energy, passion, insight, and wisdom. The impacts of his life will be felt in the LGBTQ community, the Inner Sunset, and across San Francisco and the wider Bay Area for years to come.
Randy left us too soon and he will be deeply missed. His memory and influence will live on in the hearts of many.
Randy’s family is planning a memorial service and details will be posted on his Facebook page and inner-sunset.org when available.
(Submitted by the friends of Randy Schiller.)