Harry Paynter, a past president of the former Gas Appliance Manufacturers Association (GAMA), passed away Jan. 7, 2011, after a long illness. He had retired as president of the association in May 1988, after having led it for nearly 18 years.

A retired U.S. Air Force Colonel, Mr. Paynter joined GAMA in July 1970 after a distinguished military career that included service in combat as a B-24 and B-17 bomber pilot with the famed Eighth Air Force in World War II; piloting aircraft in the Berlin Airlift following the war; intelligence assignments as Air Attaché in U.S. embassies in Pakistan and Ecuador; service as a professor of Aerospace Studies at Dartmouth College; and concluding with an assignment to Vietnam.

He also was a graduate of Oklahoma State University, and received an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.

“He will be remembered as a true gentleman and as an inspirational and effective leader,” said the association. His many accomplishments at GAMA included a major advertising campaign in the 1970s to promote the use of gas appliances, the establishment of GAMA’s efficiency certification programs in the early 1980s, and the conception of the National Appliance Energy Conservation Act of 1987 (NAECA), which still provides the basis and structure for preemptive federal regulation of the energy efficiency of residential appliances and equipment.

He is survived by his wife, Betty.

Publication date: 02/28/2011