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Recognize & Celebrate businesses & people

Great Living Cincinnatians: Honorees

Celebrating the leadership, vision, tenacity, and love of community shared by the recipients of the Great Living Cincinnatian Award, presented annually by the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber since 1967.

Dean P. Fite

Awarded In 1992

1913 – 2006


Dean P. Fite, retired vice president of corporate affairs and director of Procter & Gamble, received the Great Living Cincinnatian Award from the Cincinnati USA Regional Chamber in 1992. He also was in “Who’s Who in America.” But he never rang his own bell, said his daughter, Nancy Stockmann of Bloomfield Hills, Mich. “He was always trying to do what was right for everyone else. It was just such a beautiful philosophy of Dad’s.”

Born and raised in Washington Court House, Ohio, Mr. Fite was one of Ed and Susan C. Fite’s five children. His father ran a penny-candy store and his mother taught high-school English. Mr. Fite earned money by delivering ice in a horse-drawn carriage and The Cincinnati Enquirer.

Mr. Fite had lost the money he had saved for college during the Depression, so he entered the University of Cincinnati’s co-op program. “He went away to college with one pair of pants,” his daughter said. He received a bachelor’s degree in commercial engineering from UC in 1935. While there, he was a member of Beta Theta Pi fraternity and the ROTC.

After college he kept books for a grocery store in Gallipolis, Ohio. When the store threatened to go under, he inquired about the best company to work for in Cincinnati and was advised to apply to P&G. He took time off work and came to town to fill out an application. “He scored higher than anyone to that date and down to this day,” his daughter said. But because he didn’t get another interview, he returned to Gallipolis thinking he hadn’t done well. Then came a call from P&G summoning him back to Cincinnati.

But he refused to take more time off work. “Here’s my dad who has the job of a lifetime offered to him and he is so straight he had to finish what he was doing first,” his daughter said. Mr. Fite had his second interview on a Saturday in 1937 and was hired immediately.

He entered the Army as a first lieutenant in 1942, serving in the artillery during World War II. He completed his military service in 1945 as a major with a Purple Heart and two Bronze Stars. He rejoined P&G and became vice president and member of the board of directors in 1961. He retired in 1975.

Mr. Fite served as mayor of Amberley Village during the 1980s. He is credited with bulking up the village’s coffers in anticipation of the departure of Gibson Greeting Cards – a move that spared Amberley a lot of pain later.

He served as board chairman of the Amberley Village Planning Committee, Cincinnati Museum of Natural History, the Distribution Committee of the Greater Cincinnati Foundation, Council of Financial Executives Conference Board, the Budget Committee of the Cincinnati Community Chest and the Cincinnati Working Review Committee for the Cincinnati 2000 Plan.

He was founding board member and former treasurer of the University of Cincinnati Foundation and a former board member of the Community Improvement Corp. of Cincinnati, the Hamilton County Regional Airport Authority and the Greater Cincinnati Chamber of Commerce. Fite also served as vice chairman of the advisory committee to the dean of University of Cincinnati Business College.

His wife of 66 years, Norma C. Fite, died in 2002.

Dean Fite died April 9, 2006 at the Seasons Retirement Community. He was 93.

By Rebecca Goodman, Cincinnati Enquirer

Nominate a Great Living Cincinnatian

Recipients are selected from candidates by the Cincinnati Chamber’s senior council based on the following criteria: – Community service – Business and civic attainment on a local, state and national or international level – Leadership – Awareness of the needs of others – Distinctive accomplishments that have brought favorable attention to their community, institution or organization