Museum

ISHOF
 Gold Medallion Award



Presenting the 1997  ISHOF Gold Medallion Award Winner...
 

Paul W. Bucha
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Perhaps it was his involvement in sport, particularly swimming, which gave Paul W. Bucha the "people skills" he possessed to become as successful as he was and is in in his careers in the military and private enterprise.

Born August 1, 1943, the son of Colonel Paul and Mary Bucha, Paul, commonly called Buddy, and his three sisters lived in Germany, Japan and numerous United States cities.  In 1961, he graduated form Horton Watkins High School in St. Louis, Missouri, entering West Point with the Class of 1965.

At the United States Military Academy at West Point, New York, Buddy was a two-time All-American swimmer during his three years of varsity competition.  At that time, freshmen were not permitted to swim in varsity competition.  But as a freshman, Buddy was a member of the West Point 400 yard freestyle relay team that set the NCAA freshman record of 3:20.6 in 1962.  He served as captain of the swim team for two years.

He was the number two ranking cadet militarily and graduated in the top 3% of his class, number eighteen in a class of 596 students.  In recognition of his all-around excellence, Paul Bucha received the Association of Graduates Award for Excellence in All Areas of Cadet Endeavor.  He was commissioned a Second Lieutenant of Infantry.  Immediately upon graduation from West Point, he attended the Stanford University Graduate School of Business, receiving his Master of Business Administration in 1967.  Having completed his Airborne and Ranger training during the summer break between years at Stanford, he reported to the 101st Airborne Division and became part of "Eagle Thrust" which transferred the Division to Vietnam.  Paul Bucha's unit, D Company, which had been assembled from the headquarters staff and available personnel from the stockades of the 101st and 82nd Airborne Divisions, distinguished itself under Paul's leadership, receiving assignments as a special combat unit from the Delta to the Highlands.  While in Vietnam, Paul Bucha received numerous decorations for valor, including the Purple Heart, the Bronze Star, the Vietnamese Cross of Gallantry with Palm and the Nation's highest award, The Congressional Medal of Honor.

Shortly after his return, Bucha was appointed Assistant Professor of Managerial Economics in the Department of Social Sciences at West Point.  He also served as Officer Representative and Assistant Coach of the Cadet Swimming Team under coach Jack Ryan.  In 1970, he was selected as one of the US Jaycees Ten Outstanding Young Men in America.

Upon resigning from the Army in 1972, Bucha joined the investment banking firm of  DuPont, Glore Forgan as Director of  Branch Administration and Assistant to the President.  This began a seven year association with Texas entrepreneur and US presidential candidate H. Ross Perot.  In order to assist with the merger of two of the nation's largest brokerage firms owned by Perot, Paul joined Electronic Data Systems Corporation and shortly thereafter, assumed the newly created position of Director of International Operations.

In six years with EDS, he developed and managed all international business from his headquarters - first in Teheran, Iran and then in Paris, France.  When Paul left EDS in 1979 to form is own international finance, real estate and marketing firm, he was responsible for business operations in the United Kingdom, the Netherlands, West Germany, France, Norway, Kuwait, Iran, Pakistan, Saudi Arabia, Singapore, Japan and Nigeria.

Since 1979, Paul has developed the Paul W. Bucha and Company, Incorporated (PWBCO) into a diverse privately owned company.  PWBCO was one of the founders of Port Liberte, a $1.2 billion real estate development along the waterfront of New York Harbor, in Jersey City, New Jersey.  Port Liberte demonstrated that development and the protection of the environment can be combined to provide charming and comfortable living within a secure and protected environment.  PWBCO was also involved in such diverse real estate projects as Sugarloaf USA, a golf/ski resort in the western mountains of Maine, and Half Moon Bay, a residential community along the shores of the Hudson River in Croton, New York.  In addition to the real estate projects, PWBCO was the founder of the MID Mutual Fund, an investment fund for non-resident, non-US citizens.  PWBCO is currently involved in the international and domestic marketing of a variety of products and services in both the high technology and industrial markets.

Besides his own firm, Paul is a Director of Wheeling-Pittsburgh Corporation, the parent of one of the nation's largest integrated steel manufacturing concerns.  He is Director of  M Group Resorts, owner/operator of Jalousie Plantation, the highly acclaimed resort on the Caribbean island of St. Lucia.  He is a Trustee of the Intrepid Sea, Air and Space Museum in New York City; Director of Veteran's Bedside Network; and a Director of the Zachary and Elizabeth Fisher Foundation.  In addition, Paul Bucha is active in a variety of veteran organizations including the American Legion, the United States Army Ranger Association, the Veterans of Foreign Wars, the Disabled American Veterans and the Congressional Medal of Honor Society.

Paul Bucha is a recognized lecturer on ethics in business and government, having lectured at Harvard, Princeton, Haverford, United States Military Academy, United States Air Force Academy, the Merchant Marine Academy and the United States Coast Guard Academy.

His professional affiliations include: West Point Society of New York; Asian Institute of Jersey City State College; Ends of the Earth; and the Cleveland Clinic Foundation.

Paul Bucha is the father of Jason, Heather, Lindsay and Rebecca Bucha of Waccabac, New York and was recently married to Cynthia.

Paul Bucha's All-American swimming status rolled over to his All-American character status.  His competitive spirit as a swimmer carried throughout his life in the military and in private business.  His honesty and integrity are exceptional, and the International Swimming Hall of Fame is proud to welcome him as the 1997 Gold Medallion Recipient.


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