James C. Hormel, the first openly gay person to represent the United States as an ambassador, died on Friday August 12 2021 in San Francisco. He was 88. His death, at the California Pacific Medical Center, was confirmed by a family spokesman. His son, Jimmy, said Mr. Hormel had been in the hospital for two weeks. Mr. Hormel, a philanthropist and the grandson of the founder of Hormel Foods, served as ambassador to Luxembourg under President Bill Clinton from 1999 to 2000. Born in Austin, Minn. in 1933, Jim graduated from Swarthmore College and from the University of Chicago Law School, where he later worked as assistant dean and dean of students. In three decades of philanthropy and activism, he has been instrumental in advancing equality and helping people affected by HIV/AIDS, substance abuse, and breast cancer. He also helped establish the James C. Hormel Gay and Lesbian Center at the San Francisco Public Library. As dean of the University of Chicago Law School from 1961 to 1967, he established the James C. Hormel Public Service Program to encourage law students to go into public service. In the early 1990s, he was an alternate representative of the U.S. delegation to the 51st United Nations General Assembly, the founding director of the City Club of San Francisco and a director of the San Francisco Chamber of Commerce. In 1997, Mr. Hormel was also the chairman of Equidex, a San Francisco-based company that manages the Hormel family’s philanthropical endeavors and investments He the youngest son of Jay and Germaine (Dubois) Hormel and the grandson of George A. Hormel, Hormel Foods’ founder. He grew up in Austin, where much of the town worked for the Hormel meatpacking plant run by his father. Mr. Hormel received a bachelor’s degree in history in 1955 from Swarthmore College in Pennsylvania, where he met his future wife, Alice McElroy Parker. They married in 1956 and divorced in 1965. After graduating from Swarthmore, Mr. Hormel received a law degree from the University of Chicago. He eventually returned to Swarthmore to become a member of the college’s board of managers. He met Michael P.N. Araque in 2008, when Mr. Araque was a sophomore there. They married in 2014. In addition to his husband, who worked with him in his philanthropic and charitable work, Mr. Hormel is survived by five children, Alison, Anne, Elizabeth, Jimmy and Sarah; 14 grandchildren; and seven great-grandchildren.