1994 Horatio Alger Award Winner
"You can't help but be successful if you have a job you love."
Ralph Hart was born in Boise, Idaho. He moved to Alberta, Canada when he was seven, where he was raised on a farm and earned money by catching gophers. Hart had only an eighth-grade education, but the farmer for whom he worked was a close friend of a manager of the Union Bank of Canada. At age 17, he was hired as a junior ledger keeper at a salary of $500 a year and was promoted to accountant. While working at the bank, Standard Typewriter Company hired him to sell typewriters. Selling and marketing became Hart's passion and Hart took the company over to establish the Hart Typewriter Company. After losing money in the stock market, Hart sold the rights of his company in return for selling products for the Safeguard Checkwriting Company. He later was offered a job selling for Colgate Palmolive in Canada. He lived in India, Australia and France while working his way up in the company. He became President of Colgate Palmolive International, and later executive vice president and COO of Colgate Palmolive at their NYC headquarters. After 30 years with Colgate he left, to become president, CEO and Chairman of Heublein, Inc. (which he made bigger than Colgate by the time he retired.)* Deceased