Kendrick "Ken" Bascom Melrose

Tributes~Kendrick "Ken" Bascom Melrose

Kendrick "Ken" Bascom Melrose
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Photo of Ken Melrose
Date of Birth: 
July 31 1940
Date of Death: 
May 3 2020

Kendrick "Ken" Bascom Melrose departed this earth on May 3, 2020. He was born on July 31, 1940 in Orlando, Florida to Henry Bascom Melrose and Dorothy Lumley Melrose. He was seven years junior to his brother Robert who died with his new wife in a tragic accident when Ken was in college.

Ken attended Boone High School in Orlando, Choate Rosemary Hall college prep in Wallingford, Connecticut, majored in mathematics and electrical engineering at Princeton University and graduated with honors in 1962. Ken continued his education at MIT Sloan School of Management, graduating with a Master's Degree in Management, and attended his mother's alma mater, University of Chicago, graduating with a Master's Degree in Business Administration.

In 1970, Ken joined the Toro Company where he worked until he retired after 36 years. In 1981 he was promoted to president; in 1983 to CEO and in 1985, he was named Chairman of the Board.

Ken is most known for his strong faith, his philanthropy through the Melrose Family Foundation, and his belief in "servant leadership." He wrote a book on the topic in 1995, entitled: "Making the Grass Greener on Your Side: A CEO’s Journey to Leading".

When Ken retired from Toro in 2006, he started the company "Leading by Service", through which he preached the principals of servant leadership through seminars, lectures, and teaching at Opus College of Business at the University of St. Thomas.

Ken was preceded in death by his parents, Henry and Dorothy, and his brother, Robert "Bob". He is survived by his children, Rob, Lia and Kendra; grandchildren, Charlotte and Sebastian; and his partner, Kaye O'Leary.

_____There are many accolades and videos of Ken on the internet; these are but a few. Be sure to peruse them all and watch the video tributes to him and his brother Robert "Bob".

_____The first tribute is from the The Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation and Creative at the Orlando Public Library, part of the Orange County Library System, located in downtown Orlando, Florida.

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing this week of Kendrick B. Melrose, son of Melrose Center namesake Dorothy Lumley Melrose. Our thoughts and prayers are with his family at this time.

It was eight years ago last month that Mr. Melrose presented Library Director/CEO Mary Anne Hodel with a $1,000,000 check from the Kendrick B. Melrose Family Foundation, providing the spark that made the Melrose Center a reality. In subsequent years, the Foundation provided two additional $500,000 donations, further supporting the Orange County Library System’s efforts to a provide state-of-the-art technology space for community creatives.

In his speech during the 2012 presentation ceremony, Mr. Melrose recalls his mother saying that the purpose of life is to serve others. The Melrose Center serves as a remarkable example of how influenced he was by that philosophy. We are exceptionally fortunate that Mr. Melrose decided to honor the memory of Dorothy Melrose and her love of the Orlando Public Library with these generous gifts. Since the Melrose Center opened in 2014, it has been our privilege to connect Orange County Library System customers to resources and technology they might otherwise be unable to access. We owe that privilege to Kendrick Melrose.

____Peruse the following videos and posts on Ken Melrose.

____In Memory of Ken Melrose video

____Ken Melrose September 30, 2013, Junior Achievvement of the Upper Midwest – Business Hall of Fame

____The Toro Company Remembers Ken Melrose, Legendary Former Chairman and CEO

____A History on Ken Melrose By Toro

____Christian May 13, 2020
Remembering Ken Melrose - Great Friend of Christian Union Goes Home to Be with the Lord

____Princeton University’s Class of 1962 – Kendrick B. Melrose ‘62

____GCSAA - May 5, 2020 – GCM Staff
In memoriam: Ken Melrose - The former CEO of The Toro Co. and a generous supporter of golf course superintendents and equipment managers passed away May 3.

____NASBA – National Association of State Boards of Accountancy
Ken Melrose: Being a Difference, Then and Now
Author: Andy Goldstein, NASBA Electronic Media Specialist and Webmaster
Posted: May 15, 2012

____Turfnet – Posted by John Reitman – May 5
Melrose leaves a legacy of service, leadership

____ethix - Business, technology, ethics
October 1, 2007
Kendrick B. Melrose Caring About People: Employees and Customers

____El ex CEO de The Toro Co. y un generoso defensor de los superintendentes de campos de golf y gerentes de equipos falleció el 3 de mayo.

____Ken Melrose pays loving tribute to his brother Robert Melrose - Christian Union 7/31/17

____Ken Melrose presents the Orange County LIbrary System with a check for $1,000,000 as the library unveils its plans for the Dorothy Lumley Melrose Center for Technology, Innovation and Creativity at the Orlando Public Library.

Media data: 
Place of Birth: 
Orlando, Florida, United States
Place of Death: 
Wayzata, Minnesota, United States
Primary State of Residence: 
Wayzata, Minnesota, United States

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