Stephen Bache

Date of Death

Stephen Kenneth Bache died from cancer at his home in Portland, Oregon, on November 3, 2022. Stephen was born to Eleanor K. and G. Michael Bache on September 21, 1957, in Munich, Germany, where his father served as a diplomat at the American consulate. His father’s foreign service career meant many moves during Stephen’s childhood, igniting a love of travel that persisted throughout his life. He visited most of the countries of Europe, while also touring Australia, New Zealand, Sri Lanka, Singapore, Cambodia, Tunisia, and other countries — more than sixty in total, many of them more than once.
Stephen loved history, especially European history, a subject he studied throughout his years at Phillips Academy Andover, Yale (B.A. in history), and UCLA (M.A. in history). He also earned an MBA at Columbia, which he put to work in the financial markets.
Stephen’s career in asset management spanned forty years, beginning with institutional investing at Gabelli & Co, Transamerica and Govaars & Associates, after which he progressed to independent investment advising.
In 1989 he founded Pasadena-based Yosemite Asset Management, an independent investment counselor, subsequently merged to form Hamilton & Bache. Upon the dissolution of Hamilton & Bache, Stephen formed the sole proprietorship Bache Capital Management which he operated until early 2022.
Over the course of his career, Stephen steered three different types of mutual funds to top 10 ranking in three different decades: Transamerica Cash Reserve, a money market fund in 1984-5; the Progressive Value Fund, an equity portfolio in calendar 1993; and the Pacific Advisors Balanced Fund in November 2000 and again in March 2003. These accomplishments belie the compassion that was the underpinning of his client-focused work. His enduring motto was, “I work with and for people I love, and who love me in return.”
Stephen was an avid cyclist, hiker, reader and bridge player. Over the course of his life, he would summit 140 mountains with peaks at 5,000 feet or above. As a young man, he also cycled extensively in Europe; however, the signature event of his cycling avocation was the coast-to-coast bike trip from Oregon to New Jersey that he planned out over many years and finally executed in the summer of 2012 with his sons and daughters, then ages 16-25, along with assorted friends.
Stephen was an inquisitive and social man, playing active roles in both the Glendale and Southeast Portland Rotary clubs, leading Sierra Club hikes throughout Southern California, joining Portland Bicycling Club rides, and attending alumni events for his various alma maters. He served on many boards of these and other community organizations, often serving in the role of treasurer.
He is survived by his spouse, Laura Johnson, his daughters Kathryn (Christopher Lotz) Bache and Elizabeth (Jonathan) Bay, his son Christopher Bache, his sisters Marion Bache and Vivian (Joel) Quam, and his grandchildren Theo, Arden, and Iris Lotz. He was preceded in death by his parents, his brother Nicholas Bache, and his son Alexander Bache.
Family and friends will gather to remember Stephen at Moreland Presbyterian Church in Portland, Oregon, at 10 a.m. Saturday, January 28. Memorial donations may be sent to Southeast Portland Rotary Foundation or Housecall Providers Hospice.