International Telephone & Telegraph World Headquarters - New York City

For six years years I commuted from nearby Dulles Airport in Virginia to New York City. My wife and children stayed at Miskel Farm near Sterling, Virginia. I would depart Dulles on Monday morning at 8:30 pm and return Fridays at 6:30 pm. I had an apartment in New York City just two blocks from ITT Headquarters at 320 Park Avenue.

My job as World Wide Product Line Executive for commercial aviation electronics and marine electronics included annual business planning for 13 ITT subsidiares in 12 different countries around the world, helping these companies establish research and development programs, assisting these companies with their marketing programs and most importantly, reviewing their performance and profitability. The ITT subsidiaries that I had responsibility for were located in: Denmark, Norway, Sweden, Belgium, England, France, Germany, Netherlands, Spain, Italy, Greece and the U.S. My first big coup with ITT was selling the manufacturing rights of our British and German aviation navaids manufacturers to a U.S. firm for almost a million $. They included the ground based navaids of VOR, DME and ILS for manufacture and sale in the western hemisphere a business ITT did not wish to enter in the U.S. It took a half dozen trips to Europe to pull it off. From thereon in I was ITT's golden boy.

On the last Monday of EVERY month, ITT Headquarters chartered a Pan American 707 to Brussels, Belgium for the ITT senior staff. We returned to New York on a chartered Pan Am 707 the following Saturday. ITT Europe Headquarters was in Brussels, Belgium. On Tuesday morning I would fly to whatever ITT subsidiary I was to visit that month and then return to Brussels on Friday evening. For Europhiles this sounds like great fun, but for 6 years it becomes a bit much. I also made separate trips to Iran, the Shah was still there, Japan which was fun and three trips to Russia which I enjoyed. The Vice Minister of Civil Aviation was a good friend. I had a chance to fly on a few Russian executive jets and visited their supersonic, TU-144, airliner factory which was fascinating.

The ITT Headquarters aircraft fleet based at La Guardia and Kennedy Airports consisted of six Grumman Gulfstream I turbo prop exceutive aircraft and one very long range, 6000 miles, Boeing 727-200. A Grumman Gulfstream cockpit is shown below. I flew on one to Grand Bahama Island with a friend for a Sailfishing Tournament. The ITT custom Boeing 727 could fly non stop from Hawaii to New York with its custom long range fuel tanks. It had three forward cabins for four people, and 20 first class seats in the rear. When I was aboard and returning from Europe I always phoned home to Virginia when we were over Greenland. The ITT Boeing 727 is illustrated at the bottom of this page.

Some fun and fascinating perks came with working for Harold Geneen, President of ITT. In the fall we would fly down to Georgia in one the Gulfstreams and visit a 1000 acre private game preserve. Every morning we would shoot skeet for an hour or so and then go hunting. Then with guides, our shotguns and hunting dogs we would go grouse shooting. The birds were cleaned and frozen for us to take home. I regularly took home 50 deep frozen grouse for friends and family who were warned to avoid an occasional birdshot that the cotton picking pluckers had missed.

Harold Geneen kept a large houseboat anchored in the Florida Keys near Marathon Key about a two hour drive south of Miami. To say that the houseboat was luxurious would be a gross understatement. A friend and I flew down to Miami for a weekend's bone fishing in the shallow waters near the key. Our guide would stand on the front of our shallow draft fishing boat and point out where he saw a bone fish. With fly rods we would then try to drop our fly near the bone fish. With lots of luck we managed to catch a few which were immediately released back into the water.

After retiring from ITT I took up assembly language programming, first for the Intel 8008 micro, then the 8080 micro, then the Zilog Z-80 and finally the Intel 8088 through Pentium family. For many years I wrote all the IBM InfoWindow Touchscreen programs in assembly language for my son's company Lexitech, the leading U.S. touchscreen firm.