RICHMOND, Va. — Carpenter Co. Chairman Stanley F. Pauley died on Nov. 20 at the age of 93. Until several weeks ago, he had remained engaged in the daily activities of the company he had led for more than 40 years.
“The term visionary is often over used, but in the case of Stan, it would be a completely accurate description,” said Brad Beauchamp, president and CEO. “He was one of the true giants in our industry who saw polyurethanes grow from its infancy into the premier material choice for comfort and insulation applications.”
Born Sept. 19, 1927, Pauley was hired by E. Rhodes Carpenter in 1954 and moved from Canada to Richmond, Va. At that time, Carpenter was making seating cushions out of latex foam.
In the early 1960s, Pauley and a small group of executives switched to manufacturing urethane foam, which at that time involved making a prepolymer and molding foam. Soon after, Union Carbide helped Carpenter implement the one-shot process that forms the basis of how most urethane foams are made today.
In 1970, Carpenter Co. broke with convention and opened a Greenfield site for the production of polyether polyols. Upon the death of Mr. Carpenter in the early 1980s, Pauley became chairman and CEO, as well as the majority shareholder. The company continues to be owned by the Pauley family and today includes 17 foam pouring plants as well as 25 other locations and more than 4,200 employees.
In addition to his numerous industry recognitions, Pauley supported a variety of educational and philanthropic institutions, including the VCU Health Pauley Heart Center, the VCU School of Engineering, Hampden-Sydney College, the University of Manitoba and the Virginia Museum of Fine Arts.