Malcolm W. McDonald

Malcolm W. McDonald, age 85, of St. Paul, passed away peacefully under hospice care at Sholom East mid-afternoon on August 25, 2022. Malcolm was a family man and a heartbeat of St. Paul’s philanthropy. Happy to be in the background, his life was a quiet celebration of service to others. A friend, mentor, and confidant to many a Minnesotan looking to improve their community, his was a steady hand at the helm focused on our community’s youth and their futures.

Malcolm was an active and devoted half-century long parishioner of St. John the Evangelist Episcopal Church, where a celebration of his life will be held on Saturday, October 8th at 10am (60 N. Kent St., St. Paul). A reception with light fare will follow from Noon to 2pm at St. Paul College (235 Marshall Ave., St. Paul). Interment will be at St. John the Evangelist Columbarium alongside his deceased wives. In his youth Malcolm attended Blake School. He graduated magna cum laude with Baccalaureate of Arts from Yale College in 1958, and completed an MBA at Harvard University in 1960.

Malcolm then led a successful career first as a Vice President for First National Bank of St. Paul and then as a Director and Trustee for Space Center Inc. At passing Malcolm was the Executive Secretary of the Informal Club, and treasurer for both the friends of Fort Snelling and Yale oriented Bulldogs on the Lakes. He was also an active Emeriti of the Amherst Wilder Foundation, Minnesota State Fair Foundation, and Minnesota State Board of Investment Advisory Council. Malcolm had served on the boards of a variety of local philanthropies and civic organizations, examples include the Grotto Foundation, Minnesota Center for Fiscal Excellence, Starbase Minnesota, Minnesota Council of Churches Foundation, Dayton’s Bluff Neighborhood Housing Services, F. R. Bigelow Foundation, Afton Press, Blake School Alumni Board, and several Yale related organizations.

Throughout his life he also remained active politically with a focus on voter participation. Up to his last, Malcolm cared deeply about the St. Paul College and Way to Grow of Minneapolis. Malcolm’s greatest hope was for every young person to have a fulfilling life. In 1959, Malcolm married Judith Ballard. She was a dedicated public servant and board member of People Inc., where she worked to improve care for people with mental health issues. Judy passed in 2003. In 2005, Malcolm married Patricia Johnston, founder of Johnston Publishing, and co-founder of the Afton Historical Society Press in 1993 with Duncan McMillan. Patricia passed away in 2018. Malcolm was a loving son, preceded in death by his parents, Malcolm B. and Ruth V. Stees McDonald, and younger brother George. Malcolm’s surviving younger sister Helen, a twin to George, lovingly referred to Malcolm as the best big brother ever. Malcolm is also survived by his and wife Judith’s children, Malcolm Scott (Elizabeth Bley), Margaret, Philip, Scott’s and wife Elizabeth’s daughter Mackenzie, and Philip’s late former wife Amanda’s daughter Camile. In lieu of flowers, donations to the McDonald-Stees Scholarship at the Friends of Saint Paul College are appreciated. (235 Marshall Avenue, St. Paul, MN 55102 or