News Article

15 October 2013

A Tribute to Wayne Alderson

Wayne Alderson, founder, Value of the Person, 1974. Co Founder Value the Person International™, 1999.

2013 saw the passing of the founder of Value of the Person following the dramatic transformation of Pittron Steel from a failing, strike torn, racially bigoted mill into one of the USA's most productive business in less than two years.

Wayne was born in 1926 into a mining family. His father was seriously injured in a mining accident when Wayne was 11 and the family were forced to leave the company owned house and lose all the related 'benefits' that came with the job.

This event turned Wayne into a rebel. World War 2 opened up the possibility of giving vent to his anger. Volunteering to be a point man was not something that many did as their life expectancy was only a few weeks. Wayne and his buddy, Red Preston, were the first American soldiers to cross the Rhine in 1945. A few days later he was severely wounded and hospitalized for two years. His friend, Red, did not survive, taking a bullet to the head aimed at Wayne.

His ongoing anger was eventually harnessed by Nancy, who went on to be his bride for life. Qualifying as an accountant gave Wayne the opportunity to enter industry, where he was shocked by the attitudes of managers towards their employees. He verbalized his concerns at every opportunity. Pittron Steel, where he was Vice President - Finance, was about to be put into liquidation in 1972, being 80 days into a crippling strike. The President of the Group asked Wayne to attempt a rescue.

The rest of the story is history and recorded in the documentary 'The Miracle of Pittron', which is often replayed on the Public Broadcasting Service on USA Labor Day each September.

In 1974 he founded 'Value of the Person' to take the principles of Love, Dignity & Respect into industry and, also, to the family. For Wayne this became a commitment for life. Wayne's biography 'Stronger than Steel' was published in 1981 and his leadership theory 'Theory R Management' in 1995.

In 1999 Wayne became a co founder of 'Value the Person™ International' with a number of 'kindred spirits' from the UK.

"We believe that Wayne's legacy is being lived out across the world in our efforts to take the core messages into organizations and communities as diverse as Albania, Rwanda, the Middle East and Europe." said Jim Cowan, co founder 'Value the Person™ International'.

"A number a fresh initiatives are being planned and we are honoured to have such a rich history in the life of Wayne", commented Gavin Cargill, co founder 'Value the Person™ International.

Wayne's Congressman Tim Murphy gave the following tribute to Wayne in Washington DC.

Dr Tony Campolo, Honourary President of Value the Person™ paid this tribute to his friend, "He did much for the Kingdom, and was tireless in his efforts to be an agent of love and reconciliation between labor and management. His ministry will be missed."