Co-chairman, Roll International Corp., handles Roll International's financial and business development; art collector; philanthropist
She: Co-chairwoman, Roll International Corp.; develops branding and marketing of Roll International companies, including Teleflora, POM Wonderful and Fiji Water; art collector; donates to education and mental health organizations
Years Married: 37
Stewart and Lynda Resnick made a splash on the L.A. art scene in 2008 with a $45 million donation to LACMA.
That means when a new pavilion at the Los Angeles County Museum of Art is unveiled next year, it will be called the Lynda and Stewart Resnick Exhibition Pavilion in recognition of the couple best known for presiding over an agricultural and retail empire. So they will join the ranks of leading L.A. philanthropists such as fellow billionaires Eli and Edythe Broad.
The Resnicks donated the $45 million to LACMA in September for the new Renzo Piano-designed structure, which will sit directly north of the Broad Contemporary Art Museum on the Miracle Mile museum campus.
Michael Govan, chief executive of LACMA, said the Resnicks have become a major force in L.A. power circles.
"They have the incredible ability to gather people all over the city and from many fields," Govan said. "They are the nexus of all kinds of people in Los Angeles who are the movers and shakers in every field."
The donation comes from the Resnick's estimated $1.4 billion net worth that has been amassed through their private holding company Roll International Inc.
Govan said the Resnicks have been a valuable resource during his three-year tenure at the helm of the museum.
"Lynda has been a real force in the museum, and has a great sense of art," Govan said. "Stewart is smart and has been somebody to give advice and help me through thinking the business side of things."
The museum gift wasn't the couple's only philanthropic milestone of 2008.
UCLA opened the Stewart and Lynda Resnick Neuropsychiatric Hospital in June. The hospital was revamped after the Resnicks donated $15 million for the facility in 2006.
The Resnicks are also working to establish a charter school in the Central Valley, and plan to open a preschool there this year. They have extensive land holdings in the region, including almond and pistachio farms, and pomegranate and citrus orchards.
But it's not just their philanthropic efforts that make the Resnicks an L.A. power couple. Lynda runs in the same circles as Huffington Post editor Arianna Huffington, and is the godmother of the political commentator's daughter. Lynda also hosts salons that gather L.A.'s elite residents in the couple's luxurious Beverly Hills mansion. Her friends include authors E. L. Doctorow and Jared Diamond, and show biz luminaries Martha Stewart and Sylvester Stallone.
In a recent New Yorker magazine profile, Lynda acknowledged that her "Rolodex is pretty highfalutin." But she doesn't just work the Rolodex for social purposes, her connections have helped her promote Roll International business.
Roll's holdings include online flower-delivery service Teleflora, almond and pistachio producer Paramount Farming Co. and fresh citrus harvester Paramount Citrus.
To boost Teleflora's Mother's Day sales, the Resnicks hired a Hollywood producer to create reality TV show "America's Favorite Mom," which aired on NBC's "Today."
The Resnicks have found the most success with Fiji Water and POM Wonderful, the two bottled beverages that the couple has made popular through eye-catching marketing campaigns.
Lynda, who once ran her own company, revamped Fiji Water as the bottled water that is "untouched by man," and promotes pomegranate juice as an antioxidant-filled elixir that combats free radicals, and improves blood flow and prostate health in $5 bottles.
Given her experience and ongoing success, Lynda handles the marketing aspects of the couple's array of brands, and leaves Stewart to focus on Roll International's business ventures, including acquisitions. But they share the title of co-chairman, and make most major financial decisions together.
Lynda vets potential acquisitions and then presents the most viable to Stewart according to the New Yorker profile. An example was an aquatic gel that an entrepreneur was trying to sell to Roll based on its skin-smoothing properties.
After Lynda put the entrepreneur through a round of tough questions, the product didn't make the cut.
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