Robert  W. Pratt, IV

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  • The World Ocean School
    PO Box 51091
    Boston, MA 02205

Robert W. Pratt, IV

  • BORN: March 11, 1931
  • DIED: June 12, 2017
  • LOCATION: Essex, Connecticut

Robert W. Pratt, IV of Essex, Connecticut passed away peacefully on June 12. He was 86. Bob, son of the late Robert W. Pratt, III and Caroline R. White was raised in Warwick Neck, Rhode Island where he acquired a lifelong love of sailing. He attended the Moses Brown School until he moved with his family to San Antonio, Texas following his junior year in high school. He graduated from the University of Texas in 1953 where he was an active member and President of the Phi Gamma Delta fraternity. After graduation, he served as a Captain in the U.S. Army during the days leading up to America's entry into the Vietnam War. In 1957, Bob married the love of his life, Ann Prosswimmer Pratt. They began their married life in Providence, Rhode Island where Bob worked for his father conducting market research, and then moved to Ann Arbor, Michigan where he received his M.B.A. and Ph.D. degrees from the University of Michigan. They lived in many places during their long marriage, including Greenwich, Connecticut; Louisville, Kentucky; Simsbury, Connecticut and Rye, New York. Bob and Ann moved to Essex, Connecticut in December 2006, where Ann passed away on March 8, 2017. Bob had a long career in business. He joined the General Electric Company in 1963 as an Economist and spent 14 years with GE in marketing and strategic planning assignments. He was later responsible for strategy development at Heublein, Inc., R.J. Reynolds Food & Beverage Group and Avon Products, Inc. He retired from Avon as Executive Vice President and a member of the Corporate Executive Committee. During his long career, he found great joy in mentoring others and went out of his way to do so. From 1992 through 1998, Bob taught a course in Strategic Marketing Planning at Columbia University's Graduate School of Business Planning where he was Marketing-Executive-In-residence and Adjunct Professor. In addition, he advised several corporations in the areas of marketing and strategic management, and served on the board of Liz Claiborne Cosmetics and Greenfield Industries. Service was an important part of Bob's life. He was a former member of the Kentucky Governor's Council of Economic Advisors and served on several non-profit boards, including The Osborn Retirement Community, the Marketing Science Institute and Ventures in Education. He and Ann shared a passion for the arts, a passion he put into action when he served on the board of the Louisville School of Art in the 1970s, and which continued with his recent service on the board of the Lyme Academy College of Fine Arts. His other passion was business ethics. He was a supporter and board member of The Institute for Global Ethics for many years. Bob and Ann's enthusiasm and support also helped launch ethics education at the McCombs School of Business at the University of Texas at Austin. Their generosity will support that educational endeavor, including the Ethics Unwrapped Video Series and Educational Program, well into the future. Bob was a wise and gentle man who was devoted to his wife, to his family and to his country. He was an avid reader, an active citizen and he believed strongly in the responsibility of each person to contribute towards the broader social good. Bob enjoyed travel, theatre and art. He nurtured his love of sailing throughout his life, keeping a sailboat of some kind in almost every place that he lived and taking many memorable sailing trips with friends and family. Bob gave generously of his time, encouragement and expertise, both personally and professionally, and worked quietly and diligently throughout his life to leave the world a better place than he found it. He is survived by his sisters Imogene Pratt Luther and Cynthia W. Pratt, brothers Sam and Thomas White, daughters Cynthia Pratt and Carrie Pratt and grandchildren Kwena and Tumi Moloto. Interment will be held at 10:30AM on Saturday, July 1 at the Swan Point Cemetery in Providence, Rhode Island followed by a memorial service to celebrate his life. Memorial donations may be sent to The World Ocean School, PO Box 51091, Boston, MA 02205. To share a memory of Robert, or send a condolence to his family, please visit Arrangements by Robinson, Wright & Weymer Funeral Home, Centerbrook, CT.

  • July 01, 2017
    10:30 AM
  • Swan Point Ce4metery
  • Providence , RI
  • Get Directions


“ So sorry for your loss, what a lovely couple who were so devoted to each other, and raised a beautiful family. My heart goes out to all of you. ...Read More »

Posted by: deborah lynde - chester, CT

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