Roger Boas was born in San Francisco, California, in 1921. He attended Stanford University, graduating in 1942, and the day following graduation reported for duty at Camp Roberts, California, as a second lieutenant of field artillery. He spent almost four years in the army, the last eleven months of which were in combat in Europe. He returned home in December 1945.
Upon his return to San Francisco, Boas entered his family’s automobile business and simultaneously proceeded to develop a civically oriented career in a variety of ways: membership on the San Francisco Board of Supervisors (1961–1973), TV producer and moderator on PBS TV (1955–1973), Chief Administrative Officer of the City of San Francisco (1977–1986), and State Chairman of the California Democratic Party (1968–1970). He and his wife, Nancy, have four children and six grandchildren. Battle Rattle: A Last Memoir of World War II is his first book.