Huber, Donald L.
90, a prominent Dayton-area builder and developer, passed away peacefully on November 5, 2022. He was an avid aviation pilot, community-driven philanthropist, accomplished entrepreneur, loving husband and deeply devoted father . . He was a lifelong Daytonian who devoted his tireless work ethic to building homes and developing neighborhoods for tens of thousands of residents and families, primarily in Montgomery and Greene counties. He was a graduate of Oakwood High School as well as Northwestern University, where he was a member of Naval ROTC.
Donald (who went by the name “Don”) represented the third generation of builders in the Huber family. He was predeceased by grandfather Jacob Huber, a German immigrant who started the family business in 1889, and father Herbert C. Huber, whose innovative methods of home building influenced the American construction industry. as a whole and were instrumental in the expansion of the middle class in the mid-20th century. Jacob and Herbert C. and now, Don have become the fulfillment of the American dream. Don was raised under the tutelage of the notable exploits of Herbert C.. Alongside his siblings, he began working for Herbert C. Construction Company as a teenager. He designed and built his first house in Kettering when he was 14 and continued to build while still in high school.
When his father died in 1954, Don stepped in to run the house-building business with his siblings. One of their biggest projects was to put together over 5,000 acres to create the town of Huber Heights (then called Wayne Twp.). Middle class families have found safety, access and promise in this new community. Eventually, Don formed Donald L. Huber Enterprises and developed communities in Kettering, Centerville, Miamisburg, Beavercreek, Lima, Sidney, Cincinnati, Columbus, and communities outside of Ohio including Chicago and Indianapolis. Collectively, he built over 14,000 homes. He was driven by his father’s shared belief that safe, affordable homes allowed middle-class families to thrive and communities to thrive.
Philanthropy and community support were among the most important facets of Don’s life. During numerous development efforts, he and his family’s business have donated millions of dollars of land to schools, parks, churches and playgrounds. In 1957, the National Association of Home Builders asked Don to travel to Poland and advise the government on rebuilding homes following World War II. Soon after, the US State Department asked him to consult on Russian reconstruction in Moscow. He worked with Congress in the late 1960s to enact HUD’s New Communities program which served to reduce the environmental impact and inefficiency of sprawl development, as well as the segregated living environments it then created. He was asked to be appointed ambassador to Switzerland, then to Costa Rica, which he refused. He was a member of the “Young Turks”, a small group of influential home builders in the 1960s which included Eli Broad. He was instrumental in organizing Crime-Stoppers, an initiative that helped law enforcement prevent crime. He amassed 1,250 acres of land for Miami Valley Research Park, a nonprofit university park affiliated with local academic institutions to bring industry and cutting-edge technology companies to the area.
For more than 20 years, he worked closely on community relations and research with the Air Force, which earned him two prestigious awards, and participated in the JCOC. He served as executive vice president of the National Association of Home Builders and president of the Dayton Home Builders Association. He was appointed to the Ohio Board of Regents where he worked to make community colleges accessible and affordable. He has also served on the boards of Bowling Green University, Wright State University, Kettering College of Nursing, and Miami Valley School. He was a longtime member of St. Paul’s Lutheran Church on Wayne Ave.
Don was a caring and sentimental husband to Veronica (née Bolin), who goes by the name “Roni”. They married in 1964 and he adopted her two children, Shirley and James. Later, Don and Roni welcomed their daughters Kimberly and then Julia. They raised their children in Centerville and Oakwood. As a family they loved to travel the world and Don worked hard to instill the same values of diligence, respect and community involvement that his father instilled in him. Julia has followed in her father’s footsteps and is now the fourth generation of Hubers in the real estate business.
Don is survived by his wife, Roni; his daughters Shirley (John Berry Jr.) of Florida and Dayton, Kimberly Byrd of Minneapolis and Julia Huber Mayeux (Greg Mayeux) of Cincinnati; Sister Corinne Huber of Dayton; three granddaughters and five grandsons, and three great-grandchildren. He is predeceased by his son, James Michael Huber (died 1974); sisters Marilyn Holland (died 2022) of Kettering and twin Dorothea Bowers (died 2022) of Durham, North Carolina, and her brother, Charles H. Huber (died 2003) of Dayton.
Services will be held at Routsong Funeral Home at 2100 E. Stroop Rd., Kettering on Friday, November 11. The visits will take place from 1 p.m. to 2 p.m. The service will be at 2 p.m. Interment will be at David’s Cemetery at 3 p.m. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the research department at Wright State University Medical School. Fond memories and expressions of sympathy can be made at www.routsong.com.