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Former ANSI Chairman Jim Pearse Dies at 74

Remembered for his commitment to the American National Standards Institute

New York, Oct 15, 2004

James N. Pearse, a former chairman of the ANSI Board of Directors, died on September 29, 2004, following a long battle with brain cancer. He passed away at his home in Lacrosse, Wisconsin with his family by his side.

Mr. Pearse became chairman of the ANSI Board of Directors on January 1, 1989, and retired on December 31, 2001. Previously, he was a member of the ANSI Board and its Executive Committee, the ANSI Committee on Standards and Data Services, and the Institute’s Appeals Board. He was a former chairman of ANSI’s Company Member Council (now known as the Company Member Forum), where he helped to direct development of the publication, Standards Management: A Handbook for Profits.

In remarks made to the ANSI Board upon the retirement of Mr. Pearse, former ANSI president Manuel Peralta quoted "Pearse’s Rule: There is enough intoxication in the thrill of the discussion to be highly stimulating."

"Jim Pearse will be missed by all his friends and colleagues at ANSI and in the standardization community," said Dr. Mark W. Hurwitz, ANSI President and CEO. "We extend our deepest sympathies to his family, and remember Jim for his eminent leadership and dedication to carrying out the goals of the Institute." Mr. Pearse served for many years as group vice-president, engineering, at Leviton Manufacturing Company, retiring from Leviton on December 31, 2001. In this position, he was responsible for the research, design, and development of electrical wiring devices and electronic components and assemblies. Earlier positions included vice-president of product design and research at Appleton Electric Company and in research and development of electrical controls, relays, electrical products and numerical control systems with the Allen-Bradley Company.

Mr. Pearse was born June 5, 1930, in La Crosse. He attended the University of Notre Dame, served with the U.S. Army Signal Corps in Korea as a mobile radar technician, and later graduated with honors from the University of Wisconsin with a bachelor of science degree in electrical engineering. During his career he was active in the design and development of products for personnel protection including ground fault circuit interrupters and immersion detection circuit interrupters. He retired from Leviton on Dec. 31, 2001.

According to his family, Mr. Pearse’s professional associations included AAAS, ANSI, ASTM, IES, IEEE, NFPA and the Newcomen Society. He participated in committee work for CSA, IEC, NEMA and UL. He was a member of the National Electrical Code Committee, serving on CMP-19 and CMP-20 and was a registered professional engineer in the state of Wisconsin. He authored technical papers in a variety of trade magazines and professional journals and holds 44 United States patents and 50 foreign patents.

Mr. Pearse is survived by his wife Jeanette; three sons, James C. Pearse and Sandy Patterson of Libertyville, Ill., John P. (Cheryl) Pearse of La Crosse, and Thomas G. Pearse of Valdese, N.C.; three grandchildren, Elizabeth, Emily and John J. Pearse; and one brother, George (Pat) Pearse of Savannah, Ga.

Funeral services were held on Monday, October 4, at Blessed Sacrament Catholic Church in LaCrosse, Wisconsin. Memorials may be given to the Aquinas High School Foundation (LaCrosse, WI). Condolences can be sent to the family.

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