Pierre Samuel “Pete” du Pont IV
While the news of Governor du Pont’s passing was not unexpected, all those at the Pete du Pont Freedom Foundation are deeply saddened by this great loss. For a shining moment in Delaware’s history, the State had a great leader and a steadfast friend. Pete du Pont possessed clear vision, buoyant enthusiasm and a fascination for innovative approaches to old problems.
When the du Pont Administration began, rancor and confrontation were commonplace. Delaware faced enormous challenges, including a financial structure that drove employers away at the very time that good jobs were critical to our future. State government spent more than it could afford; tax increases were the solution of choice for prior administrations; and no one had a plan to attract jobs and rebuild the economy. Pete changed all that by winning the confidence, even affection, of former political opponents. With that cultural change in Dover and with critical support from the loyal opposition, he forged consensus about Constitutional financial reforms and tax reductions. More remarkable, Governor du Pont spotted opportunity in the Nation’s hodge-podge of bank laws, positioning Delaware as a center for the credit card industry. No single piece of legislation has had more immediate or significant impact on Delaware’s economy.
Beyond these specific accomplishments, Pete demonstrated that good will, humor and a genuine sense of neighborliness, coupled with clear vision, can transform a State. Those values are in short supply these days, making Pete du Pont’s passing yet more noteworthy. Delaware will miss its good friend, Pete du Pont.
The Pete du Pont Freedom Foundation exists to preserve that legacy by honoring the Governor’s accomplishments while creating enthusiasm for innovation that can nurture our future.
In lieu of cards or flowers, the du Pont family asks that you make a donation on Pete’s behalf to the Pete du Pont Freedom Foundation or to the Frontotemporal Disorders Unit at Mass General Hospital, Dr. Dickerson’s lab.