Haas Ethics Instructor
Peter Thigpen, a former Levi Strauss & Co. executive who taught business ethics to generations of Haas MBA students, passed away in Mill Valley on Nov. 5 after a short illness. He was 78.
Thigpen had taught Ethics and Responsible Business Leadership to MBA students nearly every spring for the past 25 years.
Born in 1939 in Pasadena, Calif., Thigpen attended Stanford, graduating in 1961 with a degree in economics. After a stint in the Marines, he returned to Stanford to earn an MBA.
Thigpen joined Levi Strauss in 1967, eventually becoming president of the European division. He led the brand’s high growth in the region through the 1970s and early 1980s. In 1982, he was named president of Levi Strauss USA and served in executive roles and on the board until he retired in 1991. That “retirement” began a new chapter of his life, as an avid volunteer and board member with several organizations, an active family man, and a Haas School lecturer, where he was much respected by students and faculty alike.
Thigpen is survived by his wife, Shelly; brothers, Steve and Jeff; sons, Craig, Eric, Chad, and Zach; four grandchildren; and five nieces and nephews.