Vale Reginald Keith Whiteley

Industry leader and innovator Reginald Whiteley has passed away at the age of 92. 

Industry leader and innovator Reg Whiteley has passed away at the age of 92.

He leaves his wife Moira, after 61 years of marriage, and their sons and families (Greg and Michelle, Andrew and Hanneke, Bruce and Rita) and the grandchildren (Mitchell, Jemima, Natasha, Neils, Jean).

Reg had a long and distinguished career, as a business founder, an innovator and an initiator of so many enduring organisations.

Reg originally graduated as an industrial chemist from the Royal Melbourne Institute of Technology and went on to work in a variety of positions, until moving to Sydney in 1955.

He married Moira in 1957. After reaching managerial seniority he left a major Australian firm to join a small chemical blending business in 1971.

After a short time as a consultant, Reg and Moira purchased the Australian General Disinfectant Company and it was renamed “Whiteley Chemicals” in 1976.

Ownership of his own company supercharged his entrepreneurial drive and competitive spirit. Whiteley Chemicals became the market leader in every field to which Reg turned his hand.

Even in equipment there was no stopping Reg. He was the first to bring Windsor Floor Cleaning equipment into Australia and initiated the Australian Standard for Carpet Cleaning (AS 3733).

He assisted Bill Wilson in the earliest days of Pioneer Eclipse and not only introduced the “Wet Look” floor finishes but also helped Bill fix up his formulating in the USA.

The acquisition of McOnie Company took on the “one stop shop” approach to cleaning supplies. And then in the infection control market Reg introduced Clearsol and Printol, Sonidet, Sonex, Wavicide, AIDAL, Matrix and Viraclean to name just a few of the innovative and patented technologies.

Reg has a long list of achievements in his career – some of which follow. He was a founding member of the National Cleaning Suppliers Association (now subsumed into the ISSA), was a founding participant and life member of the NSW Infection Control Association (the forerunner of the Australian College of Infection Prevention and Control), was the initial author and teacher of the first cleaning managers curriculum at the NSW TAFE, was a founding member of the NSW Branch of the Australian Chemical

Specialty Manufacturers Association (now known as ACCORD Australia). Reg was on the steering committee which drafted the first ever Australian Disinfecting testing system under the NSW Therapeutic Goods Act and Disinfectant Test (the TGA Disinfectant Test), which remains in force through Commonwealth Legislation.

Reg was a fearless competitor and an innovator. He held at least nine separate classes of patents which were recognised globally, he led the business through competition with the largest global companies in each of the fields of endeavour, he won awards for innovation for various products, and was proudly a life member of the Royal Australian Chemical Institute.

Reg was a reliable friend and supporter to many colleagues and staff. He was a family man, and never once missed a birthday or anniversary or Christmas. He took his family holidays with the family every single year. He will be sadly missed by his family, many friends, colleagues and communities

Reg Whiteley’s Funeral will be held:
Monday 24th December, 2018 at 3:15pm
Northern Suburbs Crematorium (North Chapel)
199 Delhi Rd, North Ryde NSW 2113
Refreshments will be held after at the Skyline 1 Room at the Northern Suburbs facility.
Rather than sending flowers, the family have requested a donation to The Smith Family or Salvation Army.

One thought on “Vale Reginald Keith Whiteley

  1. Like Reg, I was an industrial chemist, although 16 years his junior. I began work at Monsanto in Melbourne in 1963, and worked on that site for 47 years. (It was no longer Monsanto.) A group of enthusiasts at Monsanto started a ski club in 1946, which is still going, but under a different name. I joined the ski club in 1966, and I’m the current secretary. For the past 3 years, I’ve been working on a history of the ski club. One of the early members was listed as R. Whiteley, who appears to have been a member at least from February 1947 thru April 1951. I think it highly likely that he was the very same Reginald Keith Whiteley. I wonder if your good contacts are able to confirm that he worked for Monsanto in that time? Although I am fairly confident I have the right person, I am reluctant to write him in without confirmation. If so, and if family members are interested, I have some historical photos and documents which they may find of interest.

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