Ruby Diamond was born in Tallahassee on September 1, 1886. She was one of thirteen members of the Florida State College’s 1905 graduating class and received a Bachelor of Arts Degree in Chemistry. Ms. Diamond preferred that her wealth help those in need, and she contributed to many charities in Tallahassee and across Florida and was a generous donor to more than thirty-seven organizations.
Ms. Diamond was also a political activist and fought for lower taxes and racial equality. She and her brother Sydney, along with other members of the Jewish community, founded Temple Israel in 1937.
Ms. Diamond was a generous benefactor to Florida State University and established two scholarships for disadvantaged scholars. She supported the Alumni Association and the Department of Educational Research, Development, and Foundations.
In 1970, for her contributions to the university, Florida State University expressed its appreciation to Ms. Diamond by naming its largest auditorium, located inside the Westcott Building, in her honor. In 1971, she donated property in Tallahassee worth $100,000 to the university, and at age 95 in 1981, she donated downtown property assessed at more than $100,000 to partially fund an endowed chair of “national excellence” in the College of Education. In 2010, the Ruby Diamond Concert Hall was reopened after a $38 million renovation.
The Ruby Diamond Family Papers in our collection include family photographs, correspondence between Ms. Diamond and her friends and cousins, genealogical materials, news clippings about the Diamond family, and her eulogy. The materials in the collection also contain information about the history of Tallahassee and Florida State University.