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Charles Curry, pioneering marketing executive with P&G and Burrell, dies at 65
(August 6, 2012) Charles H. Curry, 65, a successful and highly regarded marketing and advertising professional and philanthropist, died on July 17th from complications of lung cancer. He was with his son Christopher and daughter Kelly at the time of his passing in Southern California.
Curry become one of the first African-American ad execs at companies like Proctor and Gamble and Leo Burnett in a career where he excelled because of his intelligence, wisdom and ability to build and maintain relationships.
Charles, who was born to a family of sharecroppers in 1946 Jim Crow Alabama, become one of the first African-American graduates of the Northwestern's School of Business in 1967.
Curry married his high school sweetheart Betty Ann and in 1969 he and his wife and their two young children left South Chicago for Cincinnati, Ohio where he got his start in brand management at Procter and Gamble.
P&G was just the beginning of Charles' pioneering career at the front edge of the baby boom generation and a member of the first wave of high level African-American corporate executives. At P&G, Charles worked with a team of up and coming elite professionals to guide billions of dollars of brand name products.
It was Curry's calm and cool demeanor combined with his intellect that guided his career to some of the most important U.S. agencies and companies including Procter and Gamble, Quaker Oats, Leo Burnett, Alberto Culver; Marketing Corporation of America and Burrell Communications where he served as President. Chuck later went to Lincoln Insurance and WellPoint, where he worked in senior management until his retirement in 2005.
As Curry was ending his professional career, his wife Betty was diagnosed with cancer. After her passing, he founded The Living Love Foundation, Inc. a not for profit dedicated to continuing the work of his wife which was inspiring self esteem in underserved, under motivated children through the arts. The Living Love Foundation continues to bring arts and essential arts programming to children in need in the U.S.
While acting as Executive Directing of Living Love, Curry also co-founded The Imagine Center with his second wife, Tauheedah Shakoor-Curry, a spiritual bookshop not far from their home in Tarzana, Ca.
Charles, who is survived by a host of family and friends across the globe, was honored at a memorial service held on Sunday, August 5th at Pierce Brothers, Valley Oaks in Westlake Village, California.
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