GARDNERVILLE, Nev. — A jewelry designer, arts aficionado and one-time fixture on San Francisco's wealthy social scene is being remembered for her contributions to conservation causes.
Thirty-four-year-old Amber Marie Bently was found dead in a Gardnerville apartment Friday. Toxicology results are pending, but Douglas County investigators say there was no evidence of foul play.
Bently had been married to businessman Christopher Bently, CEO of Bently Holdings and other companies with extensive holdings in western Nevada and the Bay Area.
In a statement issued Thursday, Bently Holdings said it was “terribly saddened” to learn of the death of a former colleague.
It said Amber Bently helped forge the company into one of the Bay Area's most sustainable businesses and her “charisma and innovative spirit live on” in the Bently organizations.
The couple were active in the San Francisco social scene and enthusiasts of the annual Burning Man festival, held annually around Labor Day on Nevada's Black Rock Desert north of Reno. About four years ago, the couple were featured as the “new kids on the block” on the San Francisco Social Diary website when they threw a pajama party at their posh Nob Hill penthouse.
Christopher Bently heads several companies founded by his late father, Donald Bently, an engineer, philanthropist and businessman who died in October at the age of 87.
The elder Bently founded Bently Scientific Co. in the garage of his Berkeley home in 1956. He renamed it Bently Nevada Corp. and moved it to Minden in 1961. By the time he sold that company to GE Energy in 2002, the company had 2,000 employees worldwide and offices in 42 counties.
Amber and Christopher Bently restored the former Federal Reserve Bank in downtown San Francisco and renamed it the Bently Reserve. In 2009, a collection of her jewelry designs was exhibited at the de Young Museum.