Henry Francis Whalen Jr. of Newtown Square, formerly of Berwyn
Henry Francis Whalen, Jr., 81, died peacefully on November 29, 2016. A Philadelphia native, Hank received a BS in chemistry from Villanova University in 1958 and was commissioned a Naval Officer through the Reserve Officers Training Corps. Following his service, he pursued graduate studies in marketing at the University of Pennsylvania’s Wharton School and began a distinguished career in the chemical industry. During his 24 years at PQ Corporation, Hank was part of the management team that grew the company from $50 million to more than $500 million in sales. Prior to joining PQ, he held various positions in business development at Rohm and Haas Co.
Hank was a tireless advocate for the essential role of the chemical sciences in industrial and economic development. Since 1960, he was a dedicated member of the American Chemical Society, the largest scientific society in the world, and played an active role in the organization’s governance. His service on various advisory boards and committees culminated in his election to the Board of Directors and later to Chair of the Board where he helped steward the Society’s affairs and $500 million operating budget. In 2002, the Society honored Hank by creating an award in his honor and naming him as its first recipient. The Henry F. Whalen Jr. Award celebrates excellence in business development and management in the chemical enterprise. The award’s 11th recipient was celebrated at a reception hosted by the Chemical Heritage Foundation (CHF) earlier this year. Hank was also a long-time supporter of CHF and a frequent contributor to its Joseph Priestley Society lecture series.
An avid traveler, Hank had crisscrossed the globe, but his most cherished trips were to the Jersey shore where he enjoyed fishing and sunsets over the Strathmere Bay.
He will be fondly remembered by his wife of 58 years, Barbara Eugenie Whalen; his five children Stacey Radich, Henry III, Wendy Romano (John), Jennifer Doyle (Bill) and Joseph (Hope); ten grandchildren; and many relatives, friends, and former colleagues.
A long-time Parkinson’s sufferer, Hank participated in numerous studies to advance understanding of the disease through the University of Pennsylvania. He faced Parkinson’s many debilitating symptoms with grace and dignity, and made the selfless decision to donate his brain to Penn’s Parkinson’s research program.
Relatives and friends are invited to his Viewing on Sunday, 5-8 PM and Monday, 9-10:15 AM at the Danjolell Memorial Home of Broomall, 2811 West Chester Pike, Broomall, PA 19008. Funeral Mass 11 AM at St. Norbert Church. Interment private.
The family asks that in lieu of flowers, donations be made to Parkinson’s Disease Research, Attn: Aubre Naughton. Penn Medicine Development, 3535 Market St., Philadelphia, PA 19104. Those wishing to celebrate Hank’s dedication to the field of chemistry may also make donations in his memory to the Chemical Heritage Foundation at www.chemher-itage.org/give.