In memoriam: Frank Hutchins

Follow RITNEWS on Twitter

Frank Hutchins

The RIT flag will be lowered to half-staff on Jan. 5 in memory of Frank Hutchins, RIT Board of Trustees chairman emeritus and honorary vice chair.

Mr. Hutchins, who lived in Brighton, died Dec. 20 at the age of 90. He had served on the RIT board for 40 years.

“RIT has lost a great friend,” said RIT President Bill Destler. “Frank Hutchins worked tirelessly on behalf of this university, serving on our board of trustees in various capacities—including chairman—for more than 40 years. His counsel was always highly regarded and valued, and he will be dearly missed. We send our deepest condolences to his wife, Jeanne, to their daughters and to his extended family and many friends.”

A lifelong resident of Rochester and known and celebrated for his passionate commitment to community, Mr. Hutchins played a leadership role in numerous social and educational institutions. A loving father, grandfather and great-grandfather, his greatest joy was to be in the company of his family and friends, particularly in the Adirondack Mountains, where the Hutchins have maintained a family home since 1963.

Mr. Hutchins was born in Rochester on July 7, 1922, and attended Brighton schools before graduating from Philips Exeter Academy in 1941 and enrolling in Dartmouth College. His studies were interrupted by World War II. After serving in the infantry in North Africa and completing officer training at Fort Benning, Ga., he returned to Dartmouth to complete his BA and earn an MBA from the Amos Tuck School of Business in 1948.

He returned to Rochester and joined Hutchins Advertising Co. As president and CEO, he grew the company to national stature, becoming one of the country’s leading agencies for telephone directory advertising. The success and growth continued through a sale to Young and Rubicam in 1977, which created Hutchins/Y&R, and ultimately a repurchase of the directory business and the creation of Hutchins/DAC Group in 1989.

As successful as he was in business, after family and faith, his priority was community service. For more than 60 years, he served a variety of organizations, including the Boy Scouts of America, YMCA, Camp Cory, United Way, George Eastman House International Museum of Photography, and the Greater Rochester Metro Chamber of Commerce, where he served as president. He had a particularly deep attachment to St. Paul’s Church, where he was a parishioner, Vestry member and Warden for more than 50 years. He was an active and engaged Dartmouth alumnus and received the Alumni Award for Distinguished Service in 1979. His passion for the Adirondacks led him to longstanding support and leadership of Paul Smith’s College as a trustee for 33 years, and to The Adirondack Park Visitor Interpretive Center, and Adirondack Park Institute, of which he was a founding director.

Mr. Hutchins received an honorary doctorate in commercial sciences from Paul Smith’s College, as well as the Alexis deTocqueville Award from the United Way of Greater Rochester, and the Civic Medal for Community Service from the Rochester Museum and Science Center.

A memorial service of Christian burial will be celebrated at St. Paul’s Episcopal Church in Rochester at 11 a.m. Saturday, Jan. 5. In lieu of flowers, the family has requested that donations be made to St. Paul’s Episcopal Church, 25 Westminster Road, Rochester, N.Y. 14607; Rochester Institute of Technology, One Lomb Memorial Drive, Rochester, N.Y. 14623; or Paul Smith’s College, Route 86 and 30, P.O. Box 265, Paul Smiths, N.Y. 12970.