UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — John “Jack” Storer’s legacy of accomplishment and leadership began in eighth grade when he received the American Legion School Award Medal for demonstrating strong qualities of character and good citizenship.
From there, he continued to soar as an academic and athletic standout in high school; a varsity football player, basketball player and honor student at Penn State; a U.S. marine who served in World War II; a celebrated professional in the wood products industry; a philanthropist and community leader; and a devoted family man.
Born in Wilkinsburg, Pennsylvania, the 1950 Penn State alumnus, who holds a bachelor’s degree in forestry, now has another commendation to add to his impressive inventory of achievement: the Penn State Distinguished Alumni Award, which is the highest honor presented by the University to alumni.
“Jack has enjoyed a lifetime of successes in his personal and professional lives, all of which are the result of his strong work ethic, his motivation to do what’s right, and his commitment to excellence,” said Rick Roush, dean of the College of Agricultural Sciences.
“Jack also firmly believes in sharing his talents and good fortune with others, as demonstrated by his longtime support of his community, Penn State and the College of Agricultural Sciences. He’s highly driven to elevate young people, especially Penn State students. Jack has clearly earned the honor of being named a Distinguished Alumnus by the University.”
Storer is a retired executive vice president of the former Osmose Wood Preserving Co. in Buffalo, New York. His 62-year dedication to Osmose, a company that specialized in wood-preserving chemicals and provided a service to utilities, launched Storer to become a worldwide leader in the industry.
Beginning as a manager of the mining division at Osmose, Storer became responsible for developing business for the chemical division in the midwestern states. His responsibilities grew, and the World War II veteran found himself overseeing Osmose’s flagship railroad division with clients such as Gulf Mobile and Ohio Railroad. A promotion placed him as the company’s executive vice president in 1985. Following his retirement in 1990, he served Osmose through consulting and board membership.
As for his Penn State story, Storer is a former multisport athlete who played football in the 1947 Cotton Bowl that ended in a 13-13 tie with Southern Methodist University. He was a member of the Parmi Nous Honorary Society, an invitation-only society dedicated to the advancement of outstanding scholarship and student leadership, and a recipient of the Award of Merit from the All College Cabinet of Penn State for outstanding service to the University.