Peter R Scholtes  1938 - 2009
Life President of The Deming Forum

We are sad to announce that Peter Scholtes died peacefully on July 11 2009 at his home in Madison Wisconsin, surrounded by family. Peter had a profound impact on those who loved him and on many he had never met. He was blessed with amazing talents and shared them generously with people all over the world. Throughout his life - whether as a priest, musician, composer, social worker, teacher, community organiser, therapist, author, or consultant - Peter had a genius for making complex and important ideas easy to grasp and put to use. He was confident in his convictions, but embraced differences and cherished his friendships that bridged cultures and countries.

Peter Scholtes was, amongst many roles, a life President of The Deming Forum. Hazel Cannon, the Forum director, remembers meeting Peter and his wife Peg in the late 1980s when a lifelong friendship began. Peter visited the UK many times, speaking at conferences and delivering seminars – challenging unfair and discriminating practices with passion, knowledge, humour and steel. He has always been a huge supporter of the Forum and a great listener offering sage advice and an endless supply of humour and energy.Hazel visited Peter several times in Madison and they enjoyed many happy times together where one or other or both would end up crying with laughter!

On a visit to see Peter and Peg in October 2007, he insisted that the photographs include 'Webster', the Capitol Kids Store mascot. Capitol Kids is the children's store owned by Peg Scholtes. The crowd barriers in the background had been erected for Barack Obama's campaign visit to the Capitol building.


From Left to Right: Patti Ross, Dean of Information Technology & Engineering, Edison Community College;  'Webster', Capitol Kids Mascot;  Debbie Ray, President of Strategic Communications Consulting;  Peter Scholtes and Hazel Cannon, Director of The Deming Forum.

Glyn Lumley, a member of the Forum team speaks for us all when he writes "Peter was a gracious, kindly man who quickly made me feel at ease. Although his health had deteriorated significantly over the years, Peter retained a sharp wit and the twinkle in his eye was never far away." Peter’s leadership work has had a huge impact on all our thinking. No matter what the setting, as people have taken on board Peter's ideas, they have seen significant benefits for their organisations and created ‘joy in work’, a constant aspiration of Peter’s. It was a true privilege to have known and worked with Peter.  We are determined to continue to promote his work here in the UK and Europe and have created the Peter Scholtes ‘Joy in Learning’ scholarship to our annual Deming TRANSFORMATION Forum in his name.He will be greatly missed and never forgotten.

Hazel J Cannon. August 2009

For more information on Peter go to the Peter Scholtes' website.

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