Richard ‘Dick’ Rowland, Grassroot Institute founder, eternal friend of freedom

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Richard O. “Dick” Rowland founded the Grassroot Institute of Hawaii in 2001 and served as its chairman and president for many years. When he died in November 2020, he was its chairman emeritus.

He started the institute after 26 years as a financial representative with Northwestern Mutual. Before that, he had served for 23 years in the U.S. Army, which brought him to Hawaii in 1971 and from which he retired as a colonel in 1975.

A graduate of Texas A&M University (BS) and Columbia University (MA), Rowland was a former life member of the Million Dollar Round Table, a former president of the Hawaii Society of Chartered Life Underwriters, a candidate twice for the U.S. Senate and once for the Honolulu City Council, a former board member Small Business Hawaii and 1997 SBH Small Business Person of the Year.

He died at age 90 on Nov. 28, 2020, in Russellville, Ala., to where he had moved three years before his death to be near his family.

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