VICTOR A. PELSON

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  • "Dearest Barbara & Family, Pat and I just learned of Vic's..."
    - Frederic Salerno
  • "Mark, Katherine, Sarah and Megan, Our thoughts and prayers..."
  • "I am saddened to learn of the loss and a man who taught me..."
    - Eric Davidson
  • "Dear Jon and family: How sorry Linda and I were to learn of..."
  • "Dear Barbara , We mourn with you over Vic's passing ...."
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PELSON-- Victor Abraham. Victor Abraham Pelson, died peacefully October 29th in NYC. Survived by his wife of 52 years, Barbara (Meyers); his loving sons Mark (Katherine), Jonathan (Katie), and Daniel (Jenny), and six grandchildren, Sarah, Megan, Mary, Benjamin, Zachary, and Tyler. Born in Newark in 1937, Victor and his now deceased sister Charlotte grew up in Irvington, NJ, where he graduated from Irvington High School in 1955, as did Barbara. Victor received his BS in Mechanical Engineering from Newark College of Engineering (NJIT), and his MBA from New York University School of Business. He began his extraordinary career at Western Electric as an engineer, quickly moving up through the ranks of AT&T and ultimately achieving the position of Chairman of Global Operations and a member of the Board of Directors. While at AT&T, Victor navigated the Company through multiple challenges, including architecting key aspects of the company's divestiture of its manufacturing arm following an anti-trust suit filed by the federal government, and the creation of the regional Bell operating companies. He played the key role in establishing AT&T as a truly global company, and was one of the first American executives to establish manufacturing facilities throughout the world, including in China and Singapore. He retired from AT&T in 1996. Victor served as the Chairman of the New Jersey State Chamber of Congress from 1989-1991, and was Chairman of the Board of NJIT for 14 years, where he also received an Honorary Doctorate. He served on many boards, including Acterna Corporation, Combustion Engineering, Dun & Bradstreet, Dynatech Corporation, Eaton Corporation, and United Parcel Service, and was a Senior Advisor to UBS Securities. Victor also navigated many challenges in his own life as a child and young man, losing his mother when he was a teen and his father soon after. Living in poverty, he cared for his disabled sister while working and going to school. Despite this, he did not acknowledge these obstacles as an adult, although they served to shape his approach to life. Victor was known by his friends and business associates as a man of great integrity, wisdom, and humor. He had an uncanny ability to bring clarity to complex issues and make wise decisions about business, and life, that led many to seek out Victor for counsel. As a father and grandfather, Victor was a hero and the center of the Pelson family. As a husband, Victor was the love of Barbara's life, marrying soon after college, and despite traveling to every distant corner of the world, never letting a day go by without wishing his wife goodnight. A man who stood with Presidents, Victor still connected deeply with everyday people who valued hard work, honesty, and devotion to family. Victor will be remembered as a brilliant businessman, a loving and devoted dad, and a husband who wanted nothing more than to be at the side of his adoring wife Barbara. Services Sunday, December 2, 11am at Temple Emanuel-El, Fifth Avenue at 65th Street. In lieu of flowers, please make donations to the Victor A. Pelson Scholarship Fund, NJIT, Newark, NJ.

Published in The New York Times on Nov. 4, 2012
Victor A. Pelson
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