OPEI issues statement on the passing of Fred Whyte

Fred J. Whyte and Lucky the TurfMutt in the Stihl offices

The Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI) issued the following statement on the passing of Fred J. Whyte:

The industry has lost a true leader and great friend. Fred J. Whyte was one of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute’s (OPEI) longest-serving board members, including acting as chair.

“Fred was a leader in the truest sense of the word, a friend and mentor to me,” said Kris Kiser, president & CEO of OPEI. “I routinely sought Fred’s guidance and direction. He sought solutions and fundamentally understood compromise in the furtherance of consensus. This is a genuine skill and key in operating a successful trade association of competitors. We will miss him.

“He was tough, smart, intuitive and just plain fun to be around. He had a terrific sense of humor and infectious laugh. He was a solid, decent, caring man.”

Kiser added, “Lucky the TurfMutt and I visited Fred in his Virginia Beach offices at Stihl. We shared a passion and love for our dogs. We would share dog stories and our pictures.”

In Fred’s honor, OPEI will make a donation to the Virginia Beach SPCA, an organization close to his heart.

Rest in peace, our friend.