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Richard Pieper to Receive National Award for Character and Citizenship

Washington, DC, June 26, 2013 --( The Character Education Partnership (CEP) is proud to announce that Richard R. Pieper Sr, entrepreneur, community leader and philanthropist, has been chosen to receive the 2013 American Patriot of Character Award.

Each year, the award is given to one American citizen whose leadership exemplifies the very best of our nation’s founding principles and ideals. It recognizes those who rise to the top of their chosen fields while upholding the highest ethical standards in service to the common good. The award will be presented at the 2013 National Forum on Character Education, Oct. 24-27, in Washington, DC.

Mr. Pieper is currently Non-Executive Chairman of the Board of PPC Partners, Inc., headquartered in Milwaukee, and Past Chairman of the Board of Trustees for the Greenleaf Center for Servant Leadership in Indianapolis.

“In many ways, Mr. Pieper’s life story reflects the great American dream. Through hard work and perseverance, he turned a small mom and pop operation into a large and thriving business. Along the way, he also chose to give back in countless ways to help others. His work to develop virtuous citizenship in young people is especially noteworthy,” said Mark Hyatt, CEP’s President & CEO.

With help from a small group of volunteers, Pieper started the Wisconsin Character Education Partnership. Today it recognizes schools of character across the state, identifies and shares best character-building classroom practices with others, provides professional development for state educators on the guiding 11 Principles of Effective Character Education and more, to include an annual state-wide conference focused on character development in Wisconsin schools. To learn more about this organization, see

Mr. Pieper was also instrumental in forging a partnership with Alverno College to offer Wisconsin K-12 school principals a special Leadership Academy in Character Education. For several years now, it has helped school leaders develop and initiate strategies to positively transform their schools while fostering important values like respect, honesty, resilience, responsibility and citizenship.

“Dick Pieper was chosen as the 2013 American Patriot of Character because he embodies the traits and qualities that help make our nation great—love of country, principled leadership, compassion, and selfless service to lift up and help others,” said Charles Haynes, Chairman of the CEP Board of Directors. “I can think of no one more deserving of this national-level recognition than Mr. Pieper. He is a great American and wonderful example for other, young and old alike.”

Throughout his years as a business leader, Pieper was active in the Milwaukee Jaycees and in the Young President’s Organization (YPO). He traveled domestically and abroad with both groups, in search of excellence in management and customer service to apply to his growing enterprises.

Mr. Pieper currently serves on several boards: Three Harbors Council--Boy Scouts of America, the Milwaukee Boys & Girls Clubs of America, The Florentine Opera, Present Music, Boelter Companies, and Elliot Companies in VA. His past service includes Junior Achievement of Southeastern Wisconsin, Young President's Organization--International, Wisconsin Council of Economic Education, Wisconsin Diabetes Association, Milwaukee Jaycees, The Milwaukee Art Museum, and numerous other professional and community service organizations.

Additionally, Dick Pieper served on the Board of the Washington, DC-based Character Education Partnership (President), and later launched the Wisconsin Character Education Partnership to move public and private elementary and secondary education across the state of Wisconsin toward the goal of "guiding, teaching, mentoring, and nurturing virtuous citizens."

Rich Teerlink, former Chairman & CEO of Harley Davidson, was on the special committee that chose Pieper for the award. He said, “There were many amazing individuals considered, but Dick Pieper quickly rose to the top. All of us were blown away by his servant leadership, his integrity and his genuine commitment to improving his community and the broader nation. He is a perfect example of how one person can truly make a profound difference. We need more people like him.”

CEP Board member and Executive Director Emerita for the National School Boards Association, Anne Bryant, added, “When Dick Pieper writes letters or emails, I’m told he often closes with the word ‘Agape.’ Author C.S. Lewis used that word to define what he considered ‘the highest level of love known to mankind—the type where one is passionately committed to the well-being of others.’ That’s what Dick Pieper is all about. I was very pleased that he was chosen for this award.”

About CEP
Character Education Partnership (CEP) is a national, nonpartisan, nonprofit coalition of organizations and individuals based in Washington, DC. It is led by business and educational leaders who are dedicated to the advancement of quality character development in all schools as a key component of positive school transformation, improved academic achievement, responsible citizenship and the pursuit of one’s best work in school and life.
Contact Information
Character Education Partnership
Rebecca Sipos
(202) 296-7743, ext 20

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