May 2, 2023
It is with great sadness we announce the death of Mr. Ira Haupt II, a respected philanthropist and long-time friend of the Archaeological Institute of America (AIA) and the AIA-New York City Society. Mr. Haupt passed on April 28, 2023, after a brief period of illness.
Mr. Haupt’s grandfather Adolph emigrated to the US in 1876, and the Haupt family would go on to exemplify the American story through their generous contributions to the cultural life of New York City. Mr. Haupt’s passion for archaeology was sparked after visiting ancient Mayan ruins during a visit in Central America. He joined the AIA board in 1992 and served multiple terms as a General Trustee, bringing years of experience from the world of finance in service of archaeology. In 1993, Mr. Haupt joined the AIA’s Development and Finance Committees where his professional expertise was critical in steering the AIA towards a financially secure future.
In addition to his financial guidance, Mr. Haupt’s vision was pivotal in establishing AIA Tours’ current business model. In 2001, Mr. Haupt received one of the AIA’s highest honors, the Martha and Artemis Joukowsky Distinguished Service Award, to recognize his incredible contributions to the Institute.
Mr. Haupt also served as a General Trustee and Treasurer of the AIA New York City Society for many years, the largest of the over 100 local AIA societies across North America. There, he was crucial in establishing an annual lectureship for the New York City Society, which was eventually renamed The Ira Haupt II Lecture to honor his significant donation. He also played a key role in establishing an Endowment to fund the society’s activities. Mr. Haupt’s generosity extended beyond the AIA and AIA New York City Society; he directly supported excavations such as Sinope, in Turkey.
The AIA is eternally grateful for Mr. Haupt’s generosity; his knowledge, experience, innovation, and deep love of archaeology helped set the AIA on a more stable course to further the AIA’s archaeological missions. We offer our deepest condolences to Mr. Haupt’s family, friends, and colleagues.
Read Mr. Ira Haupt II’s obituary written by the New York Times (Legacy)
Photo of Ira Haupt, II at the 2012 AIA Gala