Frances Hesselbein Obituary, Death – On November 1st, 1915, Frances Richards Hesselbein made her debut into the world in Johnstown, Pennsylvania. On December 11, 2022, she died away peacefully in the comfort of her home in Easton, Pennsylvania. Frances always took pride in her hometown of Johnstown, Pennsylvania, which she described as having a “large steel, huge coal, big labor, and great heart.” Frances lived to be 107 years old. Hesselbein’s guiding principle in life as a leader was “To serve is to live,” which she demonstrated both in her deeds and in what she contributed to others. She lived by this principle throughout her entire career. She served as the leader of Girl Scout troop 17 in Johnstown and then became the leader of the Girl Scouts of the United States. She also served and led in a variety of other capacities, including as the chief executive officer of the Peter F. Drucker Foundation for Non-Profit Management and as the editor in chief of the Leader-to-Leader journal, which has won several awards.
In addition to that, she held the Class of 1951 Chair for the Study of Leadership at the United States Military Academy in West Point throughout her time there. Hesselbein was a member of the boards of directors for numerous organizations, such as Pennsylvania Power and Light, Mutual of America, and The Bright China Foundation. She served as the chairperson of the Central Pennsylvania United Way. Seven different presidents extended an invitation to Hesselbein to visit the White House. In 1998, she was presented with the Presidential Medal of Freedom by former President Bill Clinton. In 1992 and 1993, she served on the Presidential Commissions on National and Community Service thanks to President George W. Bush’s appointment of her to those commissions. She was the first woman to serve on the New York Stock Exchange, the ninth woman to ever sit on the board of a Fortune 1000 company, and the first woman to ever chair a United Way campaign.
Additionally, Hesselbein was awarded twenty-two different honorary doctoral degrees, one of which was conferred upon him by the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public and International Affairs. Hesselbein would frequently tell stories about her family when she was talking about Johnstown. At the age of 98, her maternal grandpa, who owned a men’s clothes store in Johnstown and served as a Justice of the Peace there, passed away “in office.” Frances had a clear recollection of the words he had spoken: “Age is meaningless; what matters is what we do with our lives.” The Carnegie Library in the Johnstown Flood Museum is home to an organ that belonged to her grandfather. You can visit it there. Sadie Pringle Wicks, the woman who was her maternal grandmother, was the person who she commonly acknowledged as having been the person who had the biggest influence on both her life and her work.
Hesselbein’s “Mama Wicks” was instrumental in instilling in him a profound regard for diversity as well as a strong sense of history and a commitment to service. Her father, Burgess Harmon Richards, was a member of the military and held a high regard for those who serve our country. In subsequent years, he joined the Pennsylvania State Police and served in Johnstown as one of the city’s first officers. Her grandfather’s father was an ordained pastor in the Disciples of Christ Church. His name was Reverend Orphanus Quincy Adams Richards, and his sermons were described as “soaring, skillful, and heartbreaking.” John Hesselbein, who was born and raised in Johnstown and worked as a journalist for the Johnstown Democrat, became Hesselbein’s husband.
They produced documentaries that won awards and created a photography studio in Johnstown, Pennsylvania called Hesselbein Studios when he enlisted in the Navy on a voluntary basis. Additionally, the young couple developed a strong sense of community involvement, as evidenced by the fact that John was asked to serve on the Pennsylvania Human Relations Commission and that the whole family joined the NAACP. Frances Hesselbein, who was 100 years old at the time of the pandemic, would leave her residence on East 57th Street in New York City every morning to go to her office, which was located six blocks to the south. There, she would preside over the Frances Hesselbein Leadership Conference.
She was preceded in death by her husband, her siblings, and her son. Frances Hesselbein She leaves behind two nieces, one nephew, one grandson, and three great grandkids. She also has one great grandchild. On Thursday, December 29, 2022, relatives, friends, and coworkers are invited to pay their respects at the Franklin Street United Methodist Church, located at 501 Locust Street, Johnstown, Pennsylvania, from 10:00 AM until 11:00 AM prior to the start of the funeral service, which will take place at 11:00 AM. After the funeral, the burial will take place in Grandview Cemetery in Johnstown. The Schmidt Funeral Home, PC located at 407 Belvidere Street in Nazareth, Pennsylvania has been given the responsibility of making the necessary arrangements. You can leave your condolences for the family at schmidtfuneralhomepc.com. In lieu of flowers, the family requests that donations be made to the Frances Hesselbein Leadership Forum at the University of Pittsburgh, the Hesselbein Global Academy, or the Girl Scouts of the United States of America.