Roland S. Cotter-Kroboth, born June 6, 1943, in New York City, died at home in Palm Beach, FL, on July 17, after a long illness. Roland’s family spent the summers in Sea Cliff. At age 16 he worked at the North Shore Country Club and was promoted to management by the age of 19. He attended Parson’s School of Design in New York and upon graduation opened a design showroom in Port Washington. He moved the company to Locust Valley with a partner, Robert Cotter, in 1973. In the 1970s to 1990s, the pair were well-known for hosting lavish parties with hundreds in attendance and in their successive renovations of 16 estates on the North Shore’s Gold Coast.
Roland was a founding member of the Locust Valley Chamber of Commerce. He served on the Boards of Directors at Planting Fields Foundation and Bailey Arboretum. In 1997, he produced a Decorator’s Show House at Coe Hall for the benefit of United Cerebral Palsy of Nassau County. Through the dedication of more than 30 decorators the restoration of the entire mansion was completed. He used his talents again as a committee member in the restoration of Bailey Arboretum’s main house and gardens. He also purchased the Hayfever historic property in order to prevent its demolition and resold it to a prominent designer who enjoys the estate as a family retreat.
In 2010, he and his partner, Michael Piccolo, held their wedding ceremony in the adjoining suites of Mr. and Mrs. Coe prior to the Friends of Planting Fields’ Holiday Gala, where more than 100 guests joined the gala after the wedding. The couple moved to Palm Beach permanently in 2013. Roland opened a shop on Antique Row in West Palm Beach in 2011, which recently closed.
Roland was predeceased by his parents Julia and Frank Kroboth, his partner Robert Cotter, sister Dianne and brother Robert. He is survived by his husband Michael and his two nephews and two nieces. Service will be held Sunday, Sept. 18, at 3 p.m. at the Locust Valley Cemetery with reception to follow. Arrangements by Dodge-Thomas Funeral Home in Glen Cove, www.dodgethomas.com. Donations to Bailey Arboretum are suggested. Roland established the Children’s Garden in Dianne’s name at the arboretum.