Paul Joseph Rizzo
January 4, 1928 - February 23, 2017
Paul Joseph Rizzo passed away Thursday, February 23, 2017. He was born January 4, 1928 in Utica, New York and graduated from Clinton High School. He went on to attend and play football at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill and was inducted into the Order of the Golden Fleece. After graduating from UNC, Paul joined Dan River Mills, in Dan River, VA. There, he met his future wife, Sidna Chockley. He joined IBM in the late 1950's and enjoyed a very successful career which culminated in the position of vice chairman of the board. After his retirement, he became dean of the Kenan-Flagler Business School at UNC for five years. He was also a partner at Franklin Street Partners, Inc. and served as chairman of that firm. Paul was a director on many boards including Ryder Systems Inc., Fairfield University, Hollins University, BTI Telecom Corp., Xanthon, Inc., Pharmaceutical Product Development, Cox Enterprises, McGraw-Hill Companies Inc., RTI International, The Maersk Company Limited, Johnson & Johnson, Morgan Stanley, and Pozen Inc. In addition, he served on the board of UNC Healthcare System, the UNC Board of Visitors, the UNC Educational Foundation Executive Committee, and the UNC Board of Governors. He was honored with the 1994 William Richardson Davie Award and the UNC General Alumni Association's Distinguished Service Medal. In addition, Paul also received an honorary Doctor of Laws degree for his outstanding accomplishments in business, higher education administration, and philanthropy at the University of North Carolina at Chapel Hill. Kenan-Flagler's Paul J. Rizzo Conference Center at Meadowmont is named in his honor.
Paul is preceded in death by his wife of 57 years, Sidna, as well as his sister, Genevieve Mills. He is survived by his children David (Robin), Ann Bingham (Joe), and Beverley Cook (Mark); his grandchildren, Paul Rizzo, Sam Rizzo, Mary Bingham, Stephen Bingham, Hunter Cook, and Matthew Webb; his sister, Marguerite Stewart; his brother, Donald Rizzo (Diane); his brothers-in-law Sam Reefe and Don Mills; several nieces and nephews; as well as very special friends who are like family.
A memorial service will be held at 10 a.m. on Thursday, March 16, 2017 at Chapel of the Cross, Chapel Hill, North Carolina. In lieu of flowers, donations may be made to the UNC Lineberger Cancer Center or the James Spurling Football Scholarship Fund at UNC.
Published in The News and Observer from Feb. 24 to Feb. 25, 2017.