Robert R. Hesse had been president of the Chautauqua Institution, the arts and education organization in upstate New York, as well as executive director of the Joffrey Ballet and who was later the chief fund-raiser for Unicef. He and Jane Fortune were partners for 25 years. Together they created the Indianapolis City Ballet in 2008. As lovers of Italian food, they opened a seasonal Tuscan restaurant, Bella Fortuna North, in Northern Michigan. And they established a small vineyard there, where they made pinot grigio and prosecco with grapes from vines brought from Italy. Robert R. Hesse died Dec. 1 2016 of complications from cancer. He was 85. Named Chautauqua’s 14th president in 1977, he brought new vigor to the then-struggling education center and summer resort by improving programming, increasing attendance, encouraging physical improvements and balancing the budget. His efforts at Chautauqua earned him national recognition as a turnaround expert, which led to his appointment as executive director of the nearly bankrupt Joffrey Ballet in 1983. Once again he balanced the budget and stepped up fundraising and attendance. He arranged for appearances at the Kennedy Center in Washington, D.C., and the Metropolitan Opera in New York City. After three years with the Joffrey, Mr. Hesse became chief fundraiser and public relations officer for the United States Committee for UNICEF, where as a senior vice president he tripled contributions during a three-year tenure. He inaugurated the Change for Good program for UNICEF, in which airline passengers donated their unspent foreign currency as they returned home. He also worked with actress Audrey Hepburn to arrange tours of refugee camps in Ethiopia and set up her Anne Frank tour, in which she gave a narrative over a commissioned orchestral work from former Buffalo Philharmonic conductor Michael Tilson Thomas and the New World Symphony. From 1989 to 2007, he operated a consulting firm, Robert Hesse Associates, which provided planning and marketing services for more than 50 non-profit organizations. He also was director of communications services for the American College Public Relations Association. In 2009, Mr. Hesse, along with his longtime partner, Jane Fortune, and his son, Kevin, founded the Indianapolis City Ballet, where he served as chairman. One of the company’s televised performances on PBS was nominated for an Emmy Award. Born Sept. 21, 1931, in Brooklyn, the son of German-Swiss immigrants, he learned to play the violin as a child and was concertmaster of his high school orchestra. He performed with the Erie, Pa., Philharmonic while attending college in Fredonia and received a degree in music education in 1953. He later earned a master’s degree from Syracuse University and a doctorate in administration of higher education from the University at Buffalo. Drafted into the Army in the 1950s, he managed the Seventh Army Symphony in Stuttgart, Germany, and toured the capitals of Europe. As a violinist, he later played with the Amherst Symphony and performed with and managed the Utica Symphony. Returning from service, he taught music in public schools on Long Island, then came back to Fredonia in the dramatic expansion of the campus in the 1960s. At Fredonia, he held several administrative posts, including press relations, alumni affairs and fundraising, before becoming executive assistant to college president Oscar Lanford. He launched the college’s first fundraising campaign, the Annual Fund, and created the first public university alumni program, which was adopted across the SUNY system. Mr. Hesse became the first lay president of Medaille College in 1974, when the struggling Catholic school had fewer than 175 students. In three years, he expanded enrollment to more than 1,000, added programs and upgraded facilities. His success at Medaille caught the attention of the trustees at Chautauqua Institution. Since 2011, he had been co-owner of Bella Fortuna North, a seasonal Tuscan restaurant in Lake Leelanau, Mich., where he had a summer home. He and Ms. Fortune, a philanthropist and founder of the Advancing Women Artists Foundation, also lived part-time in Florence, Italy, for the past 20 years and had a home in Boca Grande, Fla. In addition to his partner and son, survivors include three daughters, Deirdre, Alison von Sternberg and Lisa; and three granddaughters.