Charlotte Shultz: San Francisco's 'Chief of Protocol' has died

A woman who played a role in helping San Francisco blossom into an international city has died.

Charlotte Shultz was married to former Secretary of State George Shultz, who died in February. She died on Friday. She was 88 years old. 

 She made her own mark in life as a civic leader and served in an unelected position for both the state and city of San Francisco.

Charlotte Shultz was born in a small Texas town but would make her mark in the city by the Bay.

For decades, she served as the city’s Chief of Protocol, helping to organize some of the biggest events, and welcoming its most important dignitaries.

She worked alongside ten San Francisco mayor’s, including Willie Brown, who as a fellow Texan, found a kindred spirit in Schulz.

"Charlotte Shultz for me was absolutely the person that I could trust and rely upon the most for any ceremony, any greetings of any significant person, any event historically speaking, or even honoring other nations and other people.  She was absolutely a perfectionist," said former mayor, Willie Brown.

Charlotte married former Secretary of State George Shultz in 1997.

The couple is seen singing "I left my heart in San Francisco," as part of a live sing-along, thanking front-line workers during the pandemic.

The pair were part of a close-knit group of friends Mayor Brown calls ``the usual suspects."

"We’ve now lost four usual suspects, George and Charlotte and Ann Getty and Wilkes Bashford.  There are three or four of us left," said Brown.

Jo Schuman Silver, widow of the creator of Beach Blanket Babylon, is one of them.

On Facebook, she called the couple amazing after George died in February.

Condolences from politicians like speaker Nancy Pelosi have poured in, the speaker saying in part, "She was revered and respected because of her grace and her kindness to all who came in contact with her."

And Governor Newsom issued a statement that said, in part, "She helped make the City of San Francisco the vibrant, international city it is today."

Schulz died at her home in Stanford at age 88, following complications with cancer.

Mayor Brown says she already planned her own memorial, where he will give the eulogy.

"As a matter of fact, we each agreed that I would do her eulogy or she would do my eulogy, whichever one of us continue to survive."

A memorial service will take place at Grace Cathedral in January.

No exact date has been determined, but mayor Brown says it will be open to the public.