ST. LOUIS – Howard Jerome, a past president of the Federation of Societies for Coatings Technology (FSCT) and former technical director of the old Spatz Paint business in St. Louis, died Dec. 8, 2000, in St. Louis. He was 79.

Mr. Jerome, who also held technical positions with several other companies in the coatings industry, was a past president of the New England Society for Coatings Technology, the St. Louis Society for Coatings Technology, and the St. Louis Paint & Coatings Association. A longtime member of the FSCT’s board of directors and Executive Committee, he was elected treasurer of the FSCT in 1979, president-elect in 1980, and president in 1981. In 1988, he received the FSCT’s highest honor, the George Baugh Heckel Award. He was an Honorary Member of the FSCT, the New England and St. Louis societies, and the St. Louis PCA.

Mr. Jerome began his coatings-industry career in 1950 as chief chemist at the E&F King Co., after earning a bachelor’s degree from Northeastern University in Boston. He later worked for Celanese Corp., Tennessee Products & Chemicals, Waterlac Finish Co., and Morris Paint Co. He joined Spatz Paint Industries Inc. in 1974 as technical director and Operations manager, and retired as technical director and vice president in 1986. He then worked for several years with the equipment business of Mozel Inc., a distribution company, before retiring in 1991.

He served five years in the U.S. Army during World War II, including service with the Army Engineers in England, France and Germany.

Mr. Jerome is survived by his wife Gene; two sons, Michael and David; a daughter, Susan Ilnicky; and two grandchildren. Memorial contributions can be made to the St. Louis Chapter of the Alzheimer’s Association, 9374 Olive Blvd., St. Louis, MO 63132.