Tunes Play on for Monte Brown

A beloved figure in the community, Monte Brown was by all accounts a man of exceptional kindness and great personal warmth.

Those who knew him best say Monte also had an abiding passion for music, so when the time came to memorialize him, efforts quickly coalesced around a scholarship involving the performing arts.

The result was the Santa Barbara Bowl Foundation/Monte T. Brown Memorial Scholarship Fund. Monte, who passed away in January 2015, had served on the Bowl Foundation Board for many years, and the organization was instrumental in the fund’s creation.

Launched in 2016, the Monte T. Brown Memorial Scholarship Fund supports area students pursuing careers in music. The fund’s inaugural recipient, Diego Patricio Pacheco, received a $2,500 scholarship for graduate studies at CSU, Northridge (CSUN). The Santa Maria native completed his undergraduate degree in tuba performance at CSUN, and plans to become a music teacher.

“Monte would be both pleased and humbled to know that Diego will have the opportunity to pursue his dream of a career in music education,” said Monte’s widow, Merryl Brown, known locally for the award-winning event design and production company that bears her name.

Born in New York City, Monte Brown moved to Santa Barbara in 1992 and worked as a private equity investor. At the time of his death he was board president of the William E. Weiss Foundation, which supports an array of nonprofit organizations nationwide. He was also an unabashed devotee of the Grateful Dead.

“Monte introduced our sons to his love of music at a very early age, taking them to countless shows at his beloved Santa Barbara Bowl,” said Merryl. “His passion for music will live on through this memorial scholarship. Dryden, Winslow, and I are enormously grateful to the Santa Barbara Bowl for its stewardship of this fund and for its kind remembrance of Monte, whom we all love and miss very much.”