Vernon Timothy Pittinger, a retired Baltimore banking executive and, in retirement, foundation fund-raiser, died Tuesday at St. Joseph Medical Center in Towson after suffering a respiratory ailment. He was 86.
A lifelong Baltimore-area resident, Mr. Pittinger began his banking career as a runner, taking messages and documents between offices, at the Equitable Trust Co.'s headquarters at Calvert and Fayette streets. He attended night school while moving up the corporate ladder, and stayed with the financial institution until he retired in 1975 as senior vice president of financial planning.
His experience on the lower rungs affected his management style, which took into account such things as what salaries tellers were earning. Forgetting such details could hurt a company, he said upon his retirement.
"I think it's beneficial if everyone has the opportunity to see what makes things tick," he said. "But they don't, and it's too bad."
During his 52 years with Equitable, Mr. Pittinger also was an auditor, second vice president, vice president of loans and vice president of investments.
For about 15 years after retiring, he was treasurer, assistant secretary, vice president and secretary for Jacob and Annita France Foundation Inc., which raises money for educational programs.
Mr. Pittinger served on many banking and financial boards and commissions, including the Baltimore County Revenue Authority, of which he was chairman from 1969 to 1975. He also was president of the Maryland Bankers' Association in 1963, and president of the Maryland Safe Deposit Association from 1943 to 1945.
He was a member of the Towson United Methodist Church, and was its finance committee chairman, a tenor in the choir and a member of its child care board. He also was a trustee of the Baltimore Conference of the United Methodist Church and a trustee of the conference's pension plan.
Born in Baltimore, Mr. Pittinger grew up in the Linwood neighborhood, north of Patterson Park. He was a 1925 graduate of the city's Evening High School.
He graduated from the University of Baltimore and, in 1937, Baltimore College of Commerce with first scholastic honors. He received his certification as an accountant in 1939, and returned to the university to teach night courses in accounting for 12 years.
In 1933, he and Viola Brannen of Ashburton were married. They lived in Forest Park 10 years, then moved to Northwood. In 1950, they moved to Hampton in Baltimore County and remained in the Towson area since.
Services for Mr. Pittinger were to be held at 11 a.m. today at Towson United Methodist Church, 501 Hampton Lane, Towson.
Surviving in addition to his wife are a daughter, Anne Buckler of LaPlata; and two grandsons.
The family suggested that memorial contributions could be made to the Towson United Methodist Church, 501 Hampton Lane, Towson 21204.