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Dave Young: In Memoriam

09-Dec-2013 2:41 PM | Steve Royal (Administrator)
Dave Young, 79, passed away peacefully at home on Wednesday, Dec. 4. He is survived by his wife Kathy, daughter Laura Doerrer (husband Craig, and grandchildren Raina and Leila), son Chris, and brother Richard (and Joyce). At his request, no services are being held.

Leaving Kodak during the layoffs of 1989, Dave and the other RPCN founders were in outplacement services together. When the group's outplacement time was up, some decided to keep on meeting about consulting. This group became the Rochester Professional Consultants Network - RPCN - in 1990.

As a very active member of RPCN over the years, Dave had a number of formal and informal roles within the organization, among them:

  • RPCN office manager
  • RPCN hard-copy newsletter editor
  • Answered RPCN phone (had a separate line at his house)
  • Served on numerous committees
  • Received and banked member dues, maintained the member roster and consulting skills directory
  • Did all the mailings for RPCN: to members, press, etc., including distributing ballots for RPCN elections
  • Purchased, picked up and brought pastries and coffee to RPCN meetings, even building his own collapsible cart/dolly for the purpose
  • Reserved Brighton Town Hall meeting rooms
  • Wrote "Hiring a Consultant" for the RPCN website (practical, concise advice)

While some of us remember him as the fellow who kept speakers honest, Dave was more likely to offer suggestions in private than to criticize someone's presentation style publicly. It was a badge of honor to earn his respect.

Dave considered himself an expert in direct-mailing, vocabulary, spelling, language usage, etc. He had good rules of thumb about overhead (PowerPoint) slides: maximum words per line (seven?), and a limited number of lines per page. He was a prolific writer of articles for RPCN's print newsletter in addition to editing, producing and labeling it, and taking it to the printer and post office.

Dave published small pamphlets on many subjects: how to be a consultant, contracts, direct-mailing, etc., that he described as chock-full of "meaty" information. He sold them by mail for a few dollars, and often generously gave them free to individual RPCN members. He also assembled, edited and produced the print version of our Member Directory.

Quite a fellow was that David R. Young. He was not afraid to share an opinion or provide advice; he would talk until he made his point. Above all, he was focused on excellence and service.  

If you would like to honor David's memory, here are links to the organizations that he found of most value: Sample Soap, samplesoap.org (accepts donations of sample-sized soap), and Literacy Volunteers, www.literacyrochester.org/donate.php.  

In honor of David's service, we are creating the "David R. Young Distinguished Service Award" for members who distinguish themselves through service to the organization or to the community.  Details pending.

RPCN will miss him.

Michael R. Van der Gaag
President, RPCN


  • 09-Dec-2013 4:19 PM | Deleted user
    He was one of the first people to greet me the first few times I attended RPCN and offered some valued critique of an article I wrote. I will miss him.
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  • 09-Dec-2013 7:39 PM | Deleted user
    At our first two RPCN Conferences, Dave accepted the position as 'registrar'. Besides taking care or the finances, he actively contributed his wisdom towards two successful events. He remained my friend ever since. I shall remember him always.
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  • 09-Dec-2013 9:19 PM | Anonymous
    Clearly, we will all miss Dave. In addition to all listed above, Dave quietly did many things that we will miss and will miss him all the more. One of a kind who really cared about all colleagues.
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  • 10-Dec-2013 4:02 PM | Anonymous
    I met for the first time with David Young 8 years ago at Literacy Volunteers of Rochester. He, as a volunteer, delivered there lectures about publishing and editing books. On the basis of these subjects our acquaintance was cemented.
    David possessed an extensive knowledge in many areas and edited articles for me, as a person whose English is my second language. These articles I could then publish on my website. The dialogue with him always was pleasant and useful. He was a kind and attentive person with a wide range of interests. He wrote a number of brochures and manuals for opening a small-scale business. He even knew much about the technology of bread baking in the various countries.
    David has resulted me for the first time in RPCN in which I was enriched with knowledge in the area of consulting.
    I am grateful for his acquaintance. My memories about him will remain with me forever.
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  • 19-Dec-2013 9:44 AM | Anonymous
    Our paths crossed many years ago when Dave was working at Kodak and then over the past few years at RPCN meetings. I always looked forward to a conversation with him. He listened. He cared. He contributed. Recently, he was dressed in a new cashmere sport jacket and shared that it was something he always wanted. He looked so good that day, told me how much he enjoyed the written notes that he and his daughter exchanged when passing crossword puzzle books back and forth. He asked a colleague about her aging parents and showed concern for the loss of my dear mother. I will remember Dave with gratitude and fondness.
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