Ron Van Gelderen passed away on February 19, 2016 at the University Hospital in Salt Lake City Utah with his daughter by his side. His Parkinson's disease was advancing rapidly and he had contracted several other health issues over the last several weeks. His desire was for his body to be donated to research at the University. There are no plans at this time for any type of services. Ron was 80 years old.
Before serving as the STC's first president from 2003 until 2006, Ron held a 20-year position as president of the Carpet and Rug Institute in Dalton, Georgia.
The STC issued the following statement:
“Our hearts, thoughts and prayers go out to Ron Van Gelderen’s family. He was a great warrior of his own disease and a caring smart and loyal friend to many of us. Ron was a steady and firm leader in an industry full of personalities and corporate politics when the STC was first formed. He earned a reputation for being a leader as the president of the Carpet and Rug Institute.
“When several key members of the turf industry came together to create the Synthetic Turf Council, STC, Ron was the perfect choice to lead. Ron’s calm and straightforward approach to the issues and opportunities facing the industry were presented in a manner that helped make this organization a success. The ability to unite competitors for the betterment of the synthetic turf industry was no easy challenge. Ron was always the first with a smile and a firm handshake; he was a gentle man who had the respect of the STC members and the town he called home.
“He loved to get up early and catch the sun rising over the city; he appreciated his family, his friends and was passionate about the things he believed in. Ron believed in the STC and its mission. We are a better organization today due in part to the example he set for us.”