CHERRY HILL - Kal and Lucille Rudman, a local couple known for their philanthropy, have died just days apart.
The deaths were reported by Deane Media Solutions, a Cherry Hill firm that serves the music, radio and multi-media industries.
"Kal and Lucille were married for 63 years and dedicated themselves to serving the music and radio industries for over six decades," said Fred Deane, a former employee of the Rudmans, who published radio- and music-industry trade publications led by Friday Morning Quarterback.
Both were 91.
The Rudmans also operated a foundation that supported charitable, educational, and civic causes in the South Jersey-Philadelphia region. The foundation was a major supporter of the Klein College of Media and Communication at Temple University, where Kal Rudman earned a master's degree in 1957.
"Kal and Lucille always cared for people," observed Deane.
In a statement Friday, Temple praised the couple as "inspirational philanthropists who have changed the lives of students over decades."
“I adored both Kal and Lucille, and losing them in a two-day period was wrenching,” said Klein College Dean David Boardman.
“But it was also a beautiful reflection of the deep connection they had in 63 years of marriage. Lucille was always at Kal’s side, and I believe she’s right back there now," he said.
Kal Rudman died Tuesday after a long illness, according to a statement from Temple. Lucille Rudman ”passed away suddenly" on Thursday, it said.
It noted Solomon "Kal" Rudman, a colorful figure known as "The Man with the Golden Ears," was known for his ability to predict which songs would become hits, particularly in the rhythm and blues genre."
The Philadelphia Music Alliance pointed to that talent in 2000, when it added Kal Rudman's name to its Walk of Fame in Center City.
"Kal began his career in radio broadcasting as a teenager," according to a biography provided by Temple.
Rudman, who also held a bachelor's degree from the University of Pennsylvania, initially balanced a day job as a science teacher with a late-night gig as a disc jockey at WCAM in Camden.
"He became Billboard magazine’s first R&B editor, then left in 1968 to begin his first trade publication, the Friday Morning Quarterback," according to Temple's account. "He ultimately created five other music publications as well, and had a long involvement with local and nationally syndicated radio broadcasts," it said.
Rudman also appeared as a music expert on TV talk shows and broadcast as "Killer Kal," an announcer for what was then known as the World Wrestling Federation.
Lucille Rudman started her career as a teacher, then became a partner in the couple's professional and philanthropic activities.
Among other charitable acts, Kal Rudman donated $2,500 to repair damage to a Lindenwold church after it was vandalized in January 2016.
He also offered a $2,500 reward for information leading to an arrest in the case.
“I do the work because I can … and want to,” Rudman said in a statement to the Courier-Post at the time.
“I look to find vacuums and important needs that matter to me, and in the big picture of the world, and I fill those vacuums and meet those needs," he said.
Temple's Klein College lauded the couple's generosity in naming Kal Rudman to its Alumni Hall of Fame in 2011.
"They have created countless scholarships and awards that support students of the arts, police and firefighter training, and children in need," the school said.
Rudman, who grew up near the North Philadelphia school, also received an Alumni Distinguished Service Award from Temple in 2014 and the initial Tribute Award from Klein College in 2017.
In announcing the 2011 honor, the Klein College noted the Kal and Lucille Rudman Foundation had given more than $2 million to the Temple University Television program, including $1.2 million in 2010 to help fund a media production center.
It also helped pay to send students on the road to cover Temple football, men's and women's basketball games and championship games.
The Rudmans' foundation reported net assets of $5.2 million in 2019, the last year for which its federal tax returns are publicly available. It donated almost $400,000 that year to support schools, health care facilities, universities and The Citizens Crime Commission.
Temple's statement indicated no public service is planned for the couple.
"In the spirit of the Rudmans’ generosity, his family asks the public to simply perform one act of kindness for someone else in lieu of sending flowers or attending a memorial service," it said.
Jim Walsh covers public safety, economic development and other beats for the Courier-Post, Burlington County Times and The Daily Journal.
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This article originally appeared on Cherry Hill Courier-Post: Cherry Hill NJ philanthropists Kal and Lucille Rudman dead