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Perry Clay, Former Sharp President, Dies At 80

Clay was the first American to head the Japanese-run business.

Perry Clay, who helped make Sharp the No. 1 microwave oven brand in America, died last week at the age of 80.

A 17-year veteran of Sharp, Clay joined the Japanese-run business in 1984 as a general manager within the home appliance division. He developed a sales organization and leveraged the vendor’s microwave manufacturing arm in Memphis, Tenn., to make the ovens tops in market share for many years, Sharp said.

His success led to his promotion as the first American president of Sharp Electronics Corp. (SEC).

Prior to Sharp, Clay spent 23 years at Westinghouse Electric Corp.

A private ceremony was held at Simons Funeral Home in Pittsburgh. According to an obituary posted on the funeral home’s site, Clay is survived by his wife Joanne, son Michael, daughter Susan and five granddaughters.

In lieu of flowers, contributions may be made to Leukemia & Lymphoma Society or Alzheimer’s Association in support of his wife.