INTERNATIONAL. Franklin Covey Co. announced that Dr Stephen R. Covey, co-founder and a former vice-chairman and director of FranklinCovey, passed away peacefully Wednesday morning due to the residual effects of a bicycle accident he suffered this past April.
He was in his 80th year. In his final hours, he was surrounded by his loving wife and each of his children and their spouses.
Dr Covey made a decision early in his life that his greatest contribution and life’s work would be as a teacher. Beginning with his role as a university professor at Brigham Young University and then as an internationally-renowned author, speaker, and consultant, he has impacted the lives of countless millions worldwide.
From grade school and university students, to Fortune 100 CEOs and numerous heads of state, he made teaching principle-centered leadership his life’s work.
In 1996, Dr. Covey was recognised as one of Time magazine’s 25 Most Influential Americans. He is the author of a number of acclaimed books, including the international bestseller The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People, which has sold more than 20 million copies in 40 languages throughout the world.
Other bestsellers include First Things First, Principle-Centered Leadership, The 7 Habits of Highly Effective Families, and The 8th Habit. His most recent books include The 3rd Alternative, The Leader in Me, and Everyday Greatness.
In 2002, Forbes named The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People one of the 10 most influential management books ever written. Chief Executive magazine recognised The 7 Habits of Highly Effective People as one of the two most influential books of the 20th century.
Dr Covey received the Fatherhood Award from the National Fatherhood Initiative, was named Speaker of the Year, received the Sikh’s International Man of Peace Award, and The National Entrepreneur of the Year Lifetime Award for Entrepreneurial Leadership.
In 1984, Dr Covey made the decision to leave full-time teaching as a university professor to establish a business organisation, Covey Leadership Center, that could take principle-centered leadership throughout the world. From the inception of that business, Dr Covey’s focus was always on writing and teaching, leaving the leadership and management of the business to others.
In 1997, Covey Leadership Center merged with FranklinQuest, to form Franklin Covey Co., a global performance improvement company that now operates in over 125 countries throughout the world. From the time of the merger to his retirement from the board last year, Dr Covey devoted essentially all of his time and effort to writing and teaching.
To Stephen, more important than his professional work was his work with his family. Stephen was a devoted husband, father and grandfather and spent a considerable amount of time with his immediate and extended family, getting together for vacations, games, celebrations, birthdays, and events of all kinds, and having one-on-one time with each of his children and grandchildren, which he loved doing.
Stephen truly believed the greatest work we do is within the four walls of our own homes and was a model of a loving and committed husband and father to the end.
Bob Whitman, chairman and CEO of FranklinCovey, said, “We lost a dear friend today. Stephen was one of the world’s great human beings. His impact is incalculable and his influence will continue to inspire generations to come. We extend our deepest condolences to Dr Covey’s family, his wife Sandra, their nine children and spouses, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren. Stephen frequently referred to them as his greatest joy, inspiration, and most significant contribution and legacy to the world.”