Ren Owen, Sloan Valve Co.'s vice president of business development, passed away on Jan. 6, 2006, leaving behind a legacy of innovation and growth in the plumbing industry.

"Sloan is a privately owned company that will be celebrating its 100 year anniversary this year," Chuck Allen, president and chief executive officer of Sloan Valve Co., said. "Over the years, the success of a company like Sloan is built upon the contributions of hundreds of unsung heroes who do their job most often without fanfare or applause. Ren was one of those individuals who took his contribution to a new level."

Born Aug. 2, 1945, in Oak Park, IL, to Ivor and Florence Owen, Ren attended Oak Park River Forest High School, graduating in 1963. After attending College at Navy Pier and studying accounting, he began working at Sloan Valve Co. in 1965 at the age of 19 as a castings inspector at Sloan's Melrose Park foundry. Ren worked there until he was inducted into the United States Army.

In 1968, after serving his country, Ren returned to Sloan in the order department, and was named manager of the department in 1976.

"Ren was Sloan to our industry," Allen explained. "He created an image built on his personal integrity, wisdom and devotion to Sloan. He was respected by all and his council was sought even by those outside our company."

In 1982, Ren was promoted to plumbing parts sales manager, and moved through the organization serving in regional and national sales manager positions over the next two decades. In 2003, he was made vice president of business development. "Ren's legacy at Sloan will last because among his many strengths was his ability as a teacher and mentor. There are many people at Sloan who have a special love for Ren because of the opportunity that he gave them to develop their personal strengths and to make a meaningful contribution to the success of our company."

Ren Owen lived with his family in St. Charles, IL, and is survived by his wife Maria, his son Michael (Lauren), and his daughters Sandra and Elizabeth.

For more information, contact Susan Kennedy at Sloan Valve Co. at 10500 Seymour Avenue, Franklin Park, IL 60131, phone 800-9-VALVE-9 (800-982-5839).