4-7-2011 - BACC Annual Dinner 2011, Pennhills Club, Bradford, Pa.

In the category of the Community and Spirit Award, the 2011 recipient is Ralph A. Rose.

The Community & Spirit Award is given to an individual or organization that has made a significant, positive impact in the Bradford area & its economic well-being through volunteer, civic, religious, cultural and/or business activities.

Ralph Augustus Rose is a Bradford native & is owner of Wright Monumental Works, Inc. with
his wife Judy. He was born April 20, 1933, & graduated from Bradford Area High School in 1952. After high school Ralph went to Kimball Union Academy in Meridan, New Hampshire & upon graduating was called into service in the US Army. He spent two years at Fort Campbell, Kentucky with the 101st Airborne Division, 3rd Army Medical Corp.

He married his high school sweetheart Judy Oliver on August 28, 1954. They have four daughters, Kimberly Rose Lundsten, Kathie Rose Wentworth, Kelly Rose Platko & Kara Rose Henke.
After returning from government service, Ralph decided that he wanted to be part of the family business & worked with his father Philip M. Rose and Family. Wright Monumental Works was established in 1915 & this year is 96 years old. On January 1, 1987, Ralph & his wife Judy purchased ownership of the company. Ralph has completed work for many families in the Bradford & surrounding areas & as far away as New Jersey, New York City, Pittsburgh, New England & beyond, helping people through a very difficult time in their lives.

In addition to the memorial business, Ralph & his family have left foot prints all over town with recognition memorials such as the beautiful black granite flame & bench in front of the Zippo-Case Visitors Center which honors George Blaisdell Duke & his mother Sarah Blaisdell Dorn. The Norwegian blue pearl architectural entrance signs & the sculptured bronze Piper Cub Airplane recognition site memorial at the University of Pittsburgh & the Harriet Wick Chapel benches are a source of great pride. Also the many benches and plaques on the walking trails at Pitt, Marilla Reservoir, Fretz Middle School, St. Bernard School & churches throughout the area. Bradford Regional Medical Center & the Bradford Hospital Foundation are large recognition projects still in progress.

Ralph’s other business interest & ventures include The Roseart Company which was also founded by his father Philip M. Rose in 1957. The company is now 54 years old. The Roseart Company set out to create marble and wood gifts of “Lifetime Elegance”. The incorporation of the famous Zippo Windproof lighter into his table lighter base was a perfect fit.

In 2000, Ralph, his wife Judy, daughter Kelly & son-in-law Mark Platko purchased the company & now Roseart through Kelly & Mark will find its own place in Bradford history.

One of Ralph’s proudest memories was in October 1982 when he was honored with adoption into the Heron Clan as a new honorary member of the Seneca Nation of Indians by George Heron former President of the Seneca Nation. He had been given an official Seneca name which translates into “Memory Keeper”.

Ralph has also been active with several libraries in the area & takes pride in having served as President of the Friends of the Carnegie Public Library.

Additionally, for over 56 years he has been involved with care of the historic Oak Hill Cemetery. In 2008 the cemetery elected a new Board of Directors & Ralph serves on that board.

In Ellicottville, New York, Ralph served as President of the Crowley Creek Development Corporation & for 26 years he & his hard working wife Judy owned & operated the Discovery Antique Shop which was another wonderful part of their lives.

Judy & Ralph

Kelly, Kimberly, Judy & Ralph, Kara, Kathie

Ralph, Judy, Kelly & Mark at the Roseart Lighter Show in 2011

Ralph & Judy at the Case Collectors Reunion in 2010

Mark, Kelly, Judy & Ralph in 2007 celebrating the 50th anniversary of Roseart