Wass, Donald L.

July 29, 1932 - January 25, 2020

Donald Leo Wass, age 87, surrounded by loving family, passed away after a short bout with pneumonia on January 25, 2020.  Don was born in Columbus, Nebraska, July 29, 1932, son of Rose and Jake Wass.   He was the 7th of 8 children and grew up in Columbus, attending St. Anthony Elementary School and high school at     St. Joseph’s in Westmont, Illinois.  It was through his best friend, Edward Krcmaric at St. Joe’s that he was introduced to the love of his life, Helen. Don enlisted in the US Air Force in 1951 and was a Bombsight Tech, as well as a Personnel Specialist.  After Don got out of the service, in September 1955, he and Helen, were married and lived in Kalamazoo, MI.  Don earned a BA & MA from Western Michigan University and attained his PhD in Industrial Psychology from Purdue University.  He & Helen moved to Richardson in 1965 for Texas Instruments and they became active members at St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church.  While raising their four children, Don was involved in many aspects of St. Paul including: Lector, Eucharistic Minister, Parish Pastoral Council, Finance Committee, School Board and Knights of Columbus.

In business, Don left TI to start his own company, based on the article he co-wrote for the Harvard Business Review – Managing Management Time – one of the most reprinted articles by HBR.  He traveled around the world giving exceptionally dynamic presentations on the concepts.  He also taught as an Adjunct Professor at both Texas A&M University and Pepperdine University.

He was a co-founder of The Executive Committee (TEC) in Texas through which he worked with Company Presidents & Executives to improve their companies and their personal lives.  Don made many strong relationships with the TEC Executives.  It was through that organization that he became friends with Bo Pilgrim.  He went on to serve for a number of years on Pilgrim’s Pride’s Board of Directors.

Even in retirement, Don worked to help others. He brought together Priests from the Dallas Diocese to form their own TEC-like board, so that they could improve their parishes and priestly lives.

He was an avid hunter, loved to travel the world, laugh, and play card games with friends and family. He and Helen loved playing Blitz (Puttin’ it in the can) with their good friends: the Besharas, the Weidenfellers, the Drehers, & the Nolans.  He was a gracious host at the beautiful mountain house that he shared with his friends the Westermans, and at the treasured lake house, but especially at his comfortable home in Richardson.

A brilliant, wonderful, caring and generous counselor to all who sought his advice, Don was a loving husband, father, grandfather, uncle and friend.   He is survived by his four children: Ann Marie Orscheln  husband Steve, Margaret Fulkerson husband Erik, Nancy Bown, and Donald L. Wass, Jr. wife  Heather.  Eleven grandchildren: Amanda, Stefani, Ryan, Kent, JB, Krysta, Travis, David, Audrey, Donald III, and Maxton, as well as numerous nieces and nephews.

A Rosary will be held
Friday evening, January 31st
St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church
720 S. Floyd – Richardson, TX 75080 

The Memorial Mass will be celebrated on
Saturday, February 1st

St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church
720 S. Floyd – Richardson, TX  75080.

Memorials can be sent to St. Paul the Apostle Catholic Church.

A Signature Service under the direction of:

Aria Cremation Service & Funeral Home
10116 E. Northwest Highway
Dallas, Texas 75238

2 replies on “Wass, Donald L.”

Lester Chessher says:

Our thoughts and prayers are with the family on the passing of this great man.

Sister Mary Paul Haase says:

Ann Marie and all the Wass family, I am praying for your dad’s soul to rest in the peace of Jesus.

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