Trustee emeritus Walter Conti dies

October 16, 2016

UNIVERSITY PARK, Pa. — Walter Conti, a Penn State trustee emeritus, died on Oct. 8 in Warminster, Pennsylvania, at the age of 87.

The Newport, Rhode Island, native served on the Penn State Board of Trustees from 1974 to 1992. He was the board’s vice chairman from 1979 to 1981 and its chairman from 1982 to 1984.

Conti earned his bachelor’s degree in home economics from Penn State in 1952, becoming a well-known restaurateur and industry leader from Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

In 1987, alumni and friends of the Penn State School of Hospitality Management established the Walter J. Conti Professorship, a program that brings industry leaders to the University on a regular basis to interact with students and faculty.

He was named the Penn State Hotel and Restaurant Society “Hospitality Executive of the Year” and has been honored by the University as an Alumni Fellow and Distinguished Alumnus.

Conti was the owner and CEO of Conti’s Cross Keys Inn and Conti’s Pipersville Inn, both in Bucks County, Pennsylvania.

An active member of hotel and restaurant professional organizations, Conti held various leadership positions in the National Restaurant Association, received the Gold Plate and Silver Plate awards from the International Foodservice Manufacturers Association and was president of the International Gold and Silver Plate Society.

He was a chairman and chairman emeritus on the Culinary Institute of America’s board of trustees, past president of both the Pennsylvania Restaurant Association and the Penn State Hotel and Restaurant Society and a trustee emeritus of the National Institute for the Foodservice Industry.

Conti served on advisory boards at Johnson & Wales College, Mercyhurst University, Oklahoma State University and the University of Delaware.

He is survived by his wife, Patricia; sons Joseph and Michael; daughters-in-law Molli and Marguerite, respectively; seven grandchildren and four great-grandchildren.

A memorial service will be held at noon, Nov. 11, at Our Lady of Mount Caramel Church, 235 E. State St., Doylestown, Pennsylvania.

Memorial contributions can be made to Penn State care of the Walter J. Conti Visiting Professorship, School of Hospitality Management, 325 Health and Human Development Building, University Park, PA 16802 or the Culinary Institute of America, 1946 Campus Drive, Hyde Park, NY 12538.

  • Walter Conti

    Walter Conti

    IMAGE: Penn State
Last Updated October 17, 2016