Tribute to RALPH LAWRENCE FRYE
Eastern Rural Telecom Association President Pat Stewart (Ironton Telephone) is shown presenting a plaque for distinguished service to Ralph Frye.
One of ERTA’s Founding Fathers, Ralph has served the Association with much dedication and diligence since he assisted with its formation in 1987.
In his vocation of telecommunications, Ralph has served over forty (45) years. He has served in the commercial, marketing, forecasting, legislative, and public affairs areas while an employee of (what is now) Verizon Telecom-Washington, DC and for Telephone and Data Systems (TDS), Madison, Wisconsin, a telephone holding company. With TDS, he served as Regional Manager for the state of Wisconsin in Commercial and Marketing Departments. In 1999, he retired as Executive Vice President. Ralph is author of numerous telephone industry papers, specialized articles, and industry position documents. He serves as an industry and trade association resource for speeches, panel member, and consultation. Currently, he is Vice President of Burke’s Garden Telephone Company in Southwestern Virginia, a rural and independent telephone company.
Ralph has served as Rector (Pastor) of a local church (Dinwiddie 3 years), Petersburg District, Virginia Annual Conference UMC prior to his telephone career. While engaged in his principal vocation of telephony, he also served as Vicar of St. Mary’s Church (The Episcopal Church-2 years) in Medford, Wisconsin;, Vicar of Church of the Holy Spirit (Reformed Episcopal Church (REC)-3 years) in Madison, Wisconsin, and Rector of St. Andrew’s Church (8 years) in Petersburg, Virginia. He is a “First Testament of God” (Old Testament) Scholar, Bible teacher, and lecturer. Most recently, served as Assistant to the Archbishop (Canon to the Ordinary) of the CEC Mid-Atlantic Province, Chancellor of the Diocese of the Potomac, and Dean of the Tidewater Deanery. He has authored several articles published in various Christian magazines and periodicals, and has served as director of major metropolitan Christian endeavors – i.e., Inter-Faith Ministries in Milwaukee, Wisconsin which had as supporters, 26 vastly different Denominations, ranging from Roman Catholic to Assembly of God.
Ralph attended Ashville-Harrison in Ashville, Ohio for secondary education; received college level education through Guilford College in North Carolina; University of Maryland Foreign Campus in Adana, Turkey; Northern Virginia Community College, Annandale, Virginia; the Methodist Pastors School at Duke University School of Religion, Durham, North Carolina; the University of Wisconsin, Madison, Wisconsin, and the United States Air Force Communications School. Principal educational endeavors are in three fields: business administration, religion, and telecommunications.
Ralph is a former Chairman of the National Council of State Telephone Association Executives. He has many industry / public affiliations: Member of the Telephone Pioneers Association; Club Corporation of America; American Legion, Colonial Heights, Virginia; Veterans of Foreign Wars, Post 8046 Williamsburg, Virginia; Williamsburg Capital Area Republican Men’s Association (CARMA); Biblical Archaeology Research Association; and Clergyman of the Convocation of Anglicans in North America (CANA) which is a part of the Anglican Province of North America.
He is a former President and Board Member, The Downtown Club, Richmond, Virginia; former Member of Review Committees of the Stonehouse Homeowners Association; former Member (Canon to the Ordinary) of the Archbishop’s Council, The Eastern Province of the Charismatic Episcopal Church; former Dean, of the Tidewater Deanery of the ICCEC; and retired Canon, The Reformed Episcopal Church, Missionary Diocese of the Central States.
The son of the late Clarence Lee Frye and Bessie Feazell Perkins Frye of Giles County, Virginia, Ralph is married to Leslie Jane Braun Frye. Mrs. Frye is an accomplished musician, composer, and singer; a past President of Women’s AGLOW, a Christian organization for fellowship and evangelization; a Bible scholar, a teacher and exhorter in Christian endeavors; in business, is Managing Partner of Northern Forests, LLC, a forest crop land firm in Virginia and Wisconsin. Mrs. Frye was educated at Northwestern University in Illinois, and did further study at the Pasadena Playhouse in California.
Ralph is blessed with three children and five grandchildren: Virginia, Bellingham, Washington; Robert (wife Karen-and two children Sara and Sean), Cross Plains, Wisconsin; and Stephanie (husband Steven Hoy-and three sons – Alexander, Chandler, and Grayson), Richmond, Virginia. Preceded in death by his eldest son, David Lee Frye.