Oscar Boonshoft was a native of New York City. A mechanical engineering graduate of Stevens Institute of Technology, Mr. Boonshoft worked as a project engineer first with the Army Air Corps at Wright Field, which later became the U.S. Air Force at Wright Patterson Air Force Base. At WPAFB he was involved in the development of armaments. This entailed design, procurement, flight-testing and the evaluation of installations in bomber aircraft. Mr. Boonshoft was promoted to USAF Contracting Officer. He later transferred to Supervisory Production Engineer before retiring in 1970. His engineering career spanned over 30 years. This was followed by active speculative trading of commodity futures contracts, which continues to date. He holds seats on three commodity futures exchanges.
Mr. Boonshoft and his late wife, Marjorie, have been generous donors to the Miami Valley community and supported the arts, education, science and medicine. Their donations have been instrumental in developing a Division of Health Systems Management, a new M.P.H. program, and a physician leadership program that encompasses new M.D./M.P.H. and M.D./M.B.A. dual degrees at Wright State University.
Mr. Boonshoft was a trustee of the Dayton Society of Natural History and a member of the governing board of the Wallace-Kettering Neuroscience Institute at Kettering Memorial Hospital. He was a trustee of the Wright State University Foundation; an honorary trustee of the Dayton Opera Association; an honorary member of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton; and a trustee of the Temple Israel Foundation.
In addition to their support of the Wright State University School of Medicine, the Boonshofts have provided major funding for the Boonshoft Museum of Discovery, the Marjorie and Oscar Boonshoft Center for Jewish Culture and Education, and the Boonshoft Center for Medical Sciences at Kettering College of Medical Arts.