NEWARK, Del., Jan. 20 /PRNewswire/ -- Genevieve Walton "Vieve" Gore, who
with her husband, Wilbert, founded W. L. Gore & Associates, died today in
Newark after a brief illness. She was 91.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20050120/DCTH035 )
A native of Utah, Mrs. Gore married Wilbert L. "Bill" Gore in 1935. During
the Second World War, they moved East where he began a career with the DuPont
Company. On their 23rd wedding anniversary -- January 1, 1958 -- with five
children to support, two of them in college, the Gores set aside the security
of Bill's job to start a business. Bill's research at DuPont had convinced him
that there was a market in the growing computer industry for wire insulated
with a polymer called polytetrafluoroethylene (PTFE), known at DuPont by the
trade name TEFLON(R).
When DuPont decided against pursuing the idea, Bill, Vieve, and their
eldest son, Bob, set up shop in the basement of the family's Newark, Delaware,
home to make PTFE-insulated ribbon cable. A full and equal partner with her
husband, Mrs. Gore was immersed in the business from the start. Although she
would serve in many roles during her lifelong career at W. L. Gore &
Associates, Mrs. Gore's first charge was to see that all the bills got paid.
From these modest beginnings, Mrs. Gore helped W. L. Gore & Associates grow
into a billion dollar corporation, along the way developing thousands of
innovative products, and launching hugely successful consumer brands like
Active in the company until her death, Mrs. Gore continued to be a
presence at the company's offices, serve on the board of directors and, as its
most tenured associate, delight Gore associates by officiating at events
honoring the milestones and accomplishments of those who followed her
inspiration. She embodied the values at the heart of the company's unique
culture, most notably the belief in the inherent potential of every
individual. Her enthusiasm, warmth and genuine interest in others spawned a
legion of devoted followers and friends.
In 1995, she joined with her son Bob and daughter-in-law Sally, in
providing funding to the University of Delaware for the construction of a new
classroom building, Gore Hall.
In addition to her business pursuits, Mrs. Gore was involved in numerous
social and civic activities during her lifetime. She served as a member of
the Senior Council for the Delaware State Chamber of Commerce and co-founded
the Delaware Community Foundation. She was named to the Board of Counselors
of Goldey-Beacom College and was involved with the American Field Service and
the Soroptimist Club. Mrs. Gore also served as a member of the Girl Scouts
President's Advisory Council and the Board of Governors for Winterthur Museum.
Mrs. Gore was born in Salt Lake City, Utah, in 1913. She studied
elementary education for two years at the University of Utah, and graduated
from Henniger Business College in 1935. She was granted an honorary Doctor of
Humane Letters degree from Utah's Westminster College in 1982 and a Medal of
Distinction from the University of Delaware in 1983. In 1989, she was named to
the Delaware Women's Hall of Fame. In 1991, she was granted an honorary degree
in Business Administration from Goldey-Beacom College. Both she and Bill were
elected to the Delaware Business Leaders Hall of Fame in 1991 and the Junior
Achievement National Business Hall of Fame in 2003.
In her personal time, Mrs. Gore pursued mountain climbing, swimming,
tennis and music with the same enthusiasm that made W. L. Gore & Associates so
successful under her guidance and leadership. She loved the outdoors and
instilled that affection in her five children, Bob Gore of Newark, DE, Susan
Gore of Cheyenne, WY, Ginger Giovale of Flagstaff, AZ, David Gore of
Corvallis, OR, and Betty Snyder of Greenville, DE, who survive her. Also
surviving her are 21 grandchildren and 33 great grandchildren. Her husband,
Bill, died while they were on a camping trip in the Wind River Range of the
Rocky Mountains in 1986.
SOURCE W.L. Gore & Associates