Howard Ransom, Sr. (February 27, 1927 - November 22, 2010) was a an entrepreneur and golfing pioneering, and one of the founders of the West Oakland Economic Development Corporation.
"Ransom became the first African American to manage a major metropolitan golf course when he took over the Galbraith Golf Course near the Oakland Airport. He also was the U.S. Army Golf Champion while serving during the Korean War." 1
Ransom operated a number of businesses over the years, including Creamcrest Dairy, a Jack in the Box restaurant and a shoe store.
(For those curious whether Ransom Avenue is named for Ransom, it is not. The 1906 Realty Syndicate tract map that created this street named it Ransom Avenue, 2 although subsequent notices in the Tribune (late 1910s) refer to Ransome Street. Note also that the corner sidewalk at Santa Rita Avenue bears an early Ransome Company stamp. No idea why the "E" appears and disappears, or why the name seems to flip between St. and Ave. on various maps.)