Beverly Hills billionaires give UC Davis $50 million to build agricultural research hub
Photo: JOSHUA TRUJILLO, MCT
Beverly Hills billionaires have given the University of California, Davis (UC Davis), $50 million to build an agricultural research hub that will be called Davis West and will be located on the campus of the University of California, Los Angeles (UCLA) in Torrance, just a few miles from the ocean. The gift, from Los Angeles–based businessman Richard Greenstein, is part of his $45 million donation in July that will help create academic programs for the future. The University of California is also to contribute $25 million. It is unclear how much of the $55 million total was budgeted by the Davis administration.
Greenstein is the grandson of Hollywood mogul, Harry Greenstein. One of his three younger brothers, Jeffrey Greenstein, made his name as a Hollywood producer in the 1990s, while another, Adam Greenstein, was the director of the “Empire Strikes Back,” which was the top-grossing movie of the summer of 2008.
Greenstein, who is Jewish, started his career in real estate in the 1980s, before he got into the television business. His first foray into film was “Good Morning, Vietnam” in 2002, which cost him $2 million of his own money. But the experience of shooting it was crucial for his commercial success, Greenstein told the Los Angeles Times.
During the 1990s, Greenstein bought a stake in AMC Theaters in downtown Los Angeles, where he ran the company’s box office operation and oversaw the creation of the Los Angeles Times. He then spent 15 years as an investment banker, and then in 2006, he bought a controlling interest in West Coast Video, which he renamed West Coast Entertainment.
In October, Greenstein’s Los Angeles Times reported that Greenstein was considering buying the Los Angeles Kings and moving the team to a new arena in downtown Los Angeles.
Greenstein’s wife, Linda, is a former actress, and she has a history of acting in the 1980s and 1990s, when she starred in shows such as TV show “The Love Boat.” In the early to mid-1990s, she appeared in the film “Beverly Hills Ninja,” where she played a stripper.