Amherst Magazine
L. Stanton Williams '41

Stan Williams died in Pittsburgh, PA rather suddenly on November 27 of complications following a heart attack. He and Dottie had moved very recently to a wonderful retirement community in Oakmont, PA. having lived in Fox Chapel, a Pittsburgh suburb, almost sixty years.

Stan was born in Honolulu, grew up in New Jersey, and graduated from Philips Andover Academy before matriculating at Amherst where he was a pillar of the Class of 1941. His later outstanding life fulfillments could have been predicted during his Amherst years, from his active and meaningful undergraduate accomplishments. May of us can remember Stan on the swimming team, member of Chi Psi fraternity, President of  Student Council, Chairman of Prom Committee, Scarab, Sphinx, Phi Beta Kappa just to name a few. He was, indeed, a leader.

After Amherst Stan matriculated at Harvard Business School later graduating with his MBA. During his lifetime he received graduate degrees from Amherst and Thiel College. After Pearl Harbor the US Navy appeared on the Harvard campus and signed him up as a prospective Ensign but did not call him to active duty until graduating a year later. He ended up in naval ordinance and carrier duty. While at Harvard he met a cute Wheaton College senior whom he married with alacrity in 1943.

After the war Stan and Dottie moved to Pittsburgh where he went to work for Pittsburgh Plate Glass (name changed later to PPG Industries). His forty-four year career at PPG was spectacular working his way up to the top from plant controller, division controller, corporate controller, financial vice president to chief executive officer and Chairman of the Board.

During his tenure as chairman, the company’s annual sales increased fifty percent and its earnings more than doubled. Also during that period, PPG Place, the distinctive office complex in Pittsburgh, was conceived and constructed.

In addition to his long and successful career at PPG, he was director of Texaco, Inc., Prudential Insurance Co. of America, Mellon Bank Corp., Rubbermaid Inc., Dravo Corp., and Forbes Reinsurance Ltd. He was also a former chairman of the Federal Home Loan Bank of Pittsburgh.

In the Pittsburgh community Stan had been chairman of the Allegheny Conference on Community Development, campaign chairman of the United Way of Southwestern Pennsylvania, served on the boards of Carnegie Mellon University, Pittsburgh Symphony, Blue Cross of Western Pennsylvania and chairman of the national board of YMCA. In 1981 he was named Vectors/Pittsburgh Man of the Year.

His loyalty to Amherst never wavered. At the time of the Class of 1941’s 50th Reunion Stan endowed the L. Stanton Williams ’41 Professorship Chair for social responsibility.

Stan was a family man, for sure. He simply loved having his family as close by as possible. They went on many exotic trips together to places such as photographing wildlife in Africa, snorkeling in Central America, hiking in Europe and enjoying cultures in different parts of the world. After retiring from PPG, Stan and Dottie wintered at their home at Johns Island Club near Vero Beach, Florida where family and friends were always welcome. A good part of the summers were spent with family at their cottage at the Iron City Fishing Club on Georgian Bay, Canada.

Stan is a real loss to our Class and will surely be missed. He is survived by his wife of sixty-two years, Dorothy, and four children, Eric, Timothy, Steven and Susie and five grandchildren. He also leaves his brother, Vernon, of the Class of 1943. To all this wonderful family we extend our deepest sympathy.

 

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