PPEF Announces College Scholarships Honoring Industry Icons


Media Contact: Keith Vincent


Irving, Texas, (May 21, 2010) Promotional Products Education Foundation, a subsidiary of Promotional Products Association International (PPAI), has approved two new scholarships honoring H. Ted Olson, MAS and Glen R. Holt, MAS, CIP, both industry veterans who passed away recently. PPEF Named Scholarships are established to ensure long-term memorials that endure over several years to assist students in pursuing their college educations.  

"While the passing of both Ted and Glen in recent weeks saddened us all, we are gratified to know that many of their industry friends and colleagues wish to honor both men with contributions to our Foundation," said Roni Wright, MAS, PPEF board chair. "The board believes that college scholarships are a very appropriate way to acknowledge these two men and their commitment to education, as well as the promotional products industry, and we are honored to establish these scholarships at the request of their family and friends."

Ted Olson passed away on April 28, 2010 at age 81, following a distinguished career as president of PPAI, then called Specialty Advertising Association International, from 1979 until his retirement in 1996. Before serving PPAI, Olson spent 19 years in management at Union Carbide and seven years with two nonprofit nursing home associations.

After his retirement, Olson became a salesperson for Geiger and was a frequent visitor at PPAI activities and at the Expo. He also continued to be involved with his regional association, Promotional Products Association Southwest, the Boy Scouts of America where he was honored as a 50-year member, the Irving Chamber of Commerce, the Irving Convention and Visitors Bureau and the Rotary Club. He also served for eight years on the board of the DFW Humane Society and was a founding member of Meeting Professionals International.

In his lifetime, Ted was recognized several times for his contributions to the promotional products industry, including his induction into the PPAI Hall of Fame, the Promotional Products Association of Canada Hall of Fame, and being named ASI Counselor’s Man of the Year within a three-year period from 1995-1997, a distinction no other person has ever achieved. Those awards and honors reflect how respected Ted was by his colleagues and peers who recognized his many selfless contributions to our industry during his 17 years with PPAI.

Glen Holt passed away on May 7, at age 76. Holt’s career spanned 48 years in the industry, most recently as president of Glen Holt International LTD.

Holt enjoyed an accomplished career starting with Washington, Missouri, supplier HAZEL Promotional Products in 1960. In 1981, he founded business services provider, CERTIFIED MARKETING CONSULTANTS, LTD., specializing in bringing new suppliers to the industry, mergers and acquisitions and executive referrals.

Holt was co-founder of the Specialty Advertising Association of Arizona (AzPPA), vice chair of the board of Specialty Advertising Association International (now PPAI) from 1986-1990, and served on the board of Promotional Products College Education Foundation (now PPEF). Holt also served as president of St. Louis Advertising Specialty Association, board member of Specialty Advertising Association of California, board member of AzPPA and a board member of the Direct Selling Association International.

In 1990, he was named ASI Counselor's Man of the Year, and three years later, was inducted into the PPAI Hall of Fame. He was the recipient of the Marvin Spike Lifetime Professional Achievement Award in 2005. In addition, he was a member of the board of directors for distributor Geiger from 2002-2008.

Holt was a strong advocate of education and was dedicated to increasing the professionalism of the industry.

Contributions to the scholarship funds may be made to PPEF, 3125 Skyway Circle North, Irving, Texas 75038 or by going to www.ppef.us, with a notation for the contributions to be directed to either H. Ted Olson, Glen R. Holt, or both.

PPEF was founded to recognize and encourage scholastic ability and academic performance among promotional products industry employees and their children. Since its inception in 1989, PPEF has awarded approximately $742,000 in financial assistance. To become part of the PPEF "I’ll Do Anything" challenge, visit www.ppef.us to make a donation; include the word "challenge" in the comments section.

PPAI—the promotional products industry’s only international not-for-profit trade association—offers education, tradeshows, business products and services, mentoring, technology and legislative support to its more than 7,500 global members. Promotional products are a multi-billion dollar industry and include wearables, writing instruments, calendars, drinkware and many other items, usually imprinted with a company’s name, logo or message. PPAI created and maintains the UPIC (Universal Promotional Identification Code), the industry’s only free identification system and universal company database.



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