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Leonard J. Freed, 88, a founder of accounting firm Freed Maxick

Leonard Freed

March 30, 1931 – Feb. 11, 2020

Leonard J. Freed, of Amherst, a founder of the accounting firm Freed Maxick, died unexpectedly Feb. 11 in Boca Raton, Fla., where he had a winter home. He was 88.

Born in Buffalo, he was a 1948 graduate of Fosdick-Masten Park High School and received a bachelor’s degree with honors in accounting from the University of Buffalo.

He served in the National Guard.

Mr. Freed worked as a certified public accountant at Price Waterhouse for five years before joining with Isadore Silverstein in 1958 to establish their own office.

It became Freed Maxick Sacks and Murphy in 1977 and grew to become one of the nation’s top 100 accounting firms, according to Accounting Today magazine, and the largest locally owned firm in Western New York.

After retiring in 1994, he consulted for more than 20 years with Ecology & Environment, a company he assisted in founding in 1970, and Empire Emco, a company his grandfather established in 1906.

He was a past president of Westwood Country Club, a member of Temple Beth Zion and a longtime board member of the Jewish Community Center of Greater Buffalo, the Foundation for Jewish Philanthropies and the Montefiore Club.

A conference room in the Jewish Community Center of Greater Buffalo's Holland Building is named in honor of him and his wife.

He enjoyed traveling, exercising, golfing and long walks in nature.

He was an avid gardener, with more than 200 orchids at his winter home in Florida.

Survivors include his wife of 62 years, the former Ellen Seeberg; three daughters, Nancy Freed, Susan Freed-Oestreicher and Alison Freed; and 10 grandchildren.

Services will be held at 3 p.m. Thursday in the Gardens of Boca Raton.

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