He based his WJO Realty at the family’s home in Pinecrest, where “to his dying breath he kept his accounting in journal books,’’ said son Robert. “He didn’t trust computers.’’
Orovitz was appointed in 1971 to FIU’s inaugural Board of Trustees, which he later chaired. He was most proud of his role in raising money for the first dorms at the West Miami-Dade campus. He was president of FIU’s private fund-raising foundation in 1986 when the university was searching for its fourth president, ultimately settling on Modesto “Mitch’’ Maidique.
Robert Orovitz said his father “saw the need for a state university in the south [of Miami-Dade] and he wanted to fill it.’’
His father “loved the water,’’ said Robert and took his kids fishing on the weekends in a 21-foot boat. Orovitz would clean the fish and store it in a garage freezer because no one in the family wanted to eat it.
The fish collection succumbed to a protracted Hurricane Andrew power outage, but daughter Kathy Kramer of Miami, a director of the Children’s Bereavement Center, said her father’s archival library of Playboy magazines survived.
Despite many years of ill health, Jim Orovitz never complained, his son said.
“He talked about it all the time, that he lived such a great life, and the last year or two he couldn’t say it enough. To the very end, he was nothing but appreciative.’’
In addition to his wife, son Robert, daughter Kathy and brother Michael, Orovitz is survived by son Mark, a Broward developer, and sister Felicia Deutch, of Coral Gables.
Funeral services are scheduled for 1:30 p.m. Tuesday at Temple Judea, 5500 Granada Blvd., Coral Gables. Entombment follows at Mount Nebo-Miami, 5505 NW Third St.
The family welcomes memorial donations to Mount Sinai Medical Center of Greater Miami, the National Parkinson’s Foundation, Jewish Museum of Florida-FIU or Temple Judea.