Arthur H. Harper, also known as Art, passed on September 19, 2017. He was 61. Art was a Founder and a Managing Partner of GenNx360 Capital Partners, Director on the Boards of Monsanto and the Gannett Company, and formerly the Chief Executive Officer of the Equipment Services Division of General Electric.
Born December 3, 1955, in New Jersey, Art’s parents were the late Joseph Harper and Eleanor Graham Harper. He grew up in New Jersey where he also attended school. He received his Bachelor of Science degree in Chemical Engineering from the Stevens Institute of Technology in Hoboken, New Jersey in 1978.
Art met and married the love of his life, Linda Richardson, in California. The couple married in 1982.
After a successful 27-year corporate career, 21 years of which were at GE, Art founded GenNx360 Capital Partners, a private equity buyout firm, in January 2006. While at GenNx360, Art served as the Chairman for Vertex North America at Vertex Data Science Limited. He also served as Chairman of Schramm, Inc. At GE, Art was a Senior Vice President and President & CEO of GE Equipment Services, a $7B revenue global business. In this capacity, Art was responsible for a portfolio of seven global businesses with operations in over 19 countries. He was a member of the GE Capital Board and member of GE’s Corporate Executive Council.
Art was a true global citizen with both his business and personal achievements. Outside of North America, he worked and played in Europe, Asia, Australia and South America just as he did in Atlantic City during his youth. During his time at GE, Art completed two successive P&L expatriate assignments spanning more than 8 years, including in Hong Kong as the President, GE Plastics Greater China, and in Belgium as the Leader of all Global Manufacturing for GE Plastics and GE Plastics Europe, India, and Africa. Before joining GE in 1984, Art spent the first six years of his career in various sales and marketing roles with Conoco, Inc. and DuPont.
Art was the ultimate strategic thinker and mentor. He was recognized as a proven leader and was honored with many prestigious awards including the GE Chairman’s Turn Around of the Year Award. In 2005, Black Enterprise Magazine named Art as one of the 75 Most Powerful African Americans in Corporate America, and that same year, he received the Award for Professional Achievement by the 100 Black Men of Stamford, Connecticut. Art was the 2015 recipient of the Stevens Institute of Technology's International Achievement Award. He was also a member of the Executive Leadership Council (ELC).
Art’s trademark was the size of his heart and how much he cared for others from any walk of life. Art was always willing to give to others his time, energy and any resources he thought could help them succeed and be their best. As part of his strong belief in giving back, Art started GenNx360 to develop a platform for others to excel. It was his idea to start a GNX Foundation that to date has given over $3.5 million to charities around the world. He was personally involved with and sat on several non-profit boards, all of which were focused on improving the future lives of minority or disadvantaged kids.
In his spare time, Art was an avid reader, constantly sharing books with employees, friends and relatives, again, with an eye towards helping with self-improvement and challenging conventional thinking. He could always be heard saying, “I’m just thinking out loud here, but …”
Related to jazz, Art traversed the globe attending jazz concerts throughout North America and Europe. He was an avid jazz collector known by his friends for his "Jazz Forever" signature signoff.
Art will surely be missed by his many relatives, friends and mentees.
Art is survived by his wife of 35 years, Linda Richardson Harper; his brother Donald, Donald’s wife Karen, and their two daughters, Ashley and Joy; and many other loving relatives.
In lieu of flowers, please send remembrances to the LRH Foundation (www.LRHFoundation.org ), a non-profit foundation started by Art and Linda to benefit those in need, especially children. Donations can only be made by check. Please make your tax deductible check payable to “The Linda Richardson Harper Foundation” and mail to:
The Linda Richardson Harper Foundation
4957 Lakemont Blvd SE, Suite C4 PMB 203
Bellevue, WA 98006
Write in the memo: In Memory of Art Harper
The Art Harper Life Celebration
October 14, 2017 @ 5:30 pm
Hyatt Regency Hotel
If you plan to attend, please respond with an email to email@example.com titled “Art Harper Life Celebration" with your name, the name of your guests, the number of guests and a message for Linda. If you need hotel reservations, a block of rooms has been reserved at the Hyatt Regency in Bellevue, WA.
Please go to https://aws.passkey.com/go/harperlifecelebration for hotel information or call 888-421-1442 for reservations.
Please join Linda, family, and friends in remembering and celebrating the life of Art Harper—a man we will never forget!
Tony Seger, Founder/CEO
Tooling Technology Holdings