In memoriam: Herbert Kohler
By Connie Lannan

In memoriam: Herbert Kohler

Herbert Kohler Jr., 83, of Kohler, Wis., died Sept. 3, 2022. He served Kohler Co. for 61 years, most recently as the company’s executive chairman since 2015. He was elected chairman of the board and CEO in 1972 and president of the company in 1974.

During his 43-year span as CEO, he transformed his family-owned company into a world leader, with more than 40,000 associates and dozens of manufacturing facilities on six continents. His father, Herbert Kohler Sr., son of Kohler Co. founder John Kohler, served as board chairman and CEO of Kohler Co. from 1940 until his death in 1968. His mother, Ruth De Young Kohler, was a historian and former women’s editor of the Chicago Tribune.

Kohler Jr. designed many of the company’s products himself and held more than 200 design and utility patents.

Kohler Jr. is survived by his wife, Natalie; daughters, Laura (Steve Proudman) Kohler and Rachel (Mark Hoplamazian) Kohler; son, David (Nina) Kohler; 10 grandchildren and three great-grandchildren. 

Connie Lannan

Connie LannanConnie Lannan

Connie Lannan is special projects editor for Rental Management. She helps plan, coordinate, write and edit ARA’s quarterly regional newsletters, In Your Region. She also researches, writes and edits news and feature articles for Rental Management, Rental Pulse, supplements, special reports and other special projects. Outside of work, she loves to bake for others, go for walks with her husband and volunteer for her church and causes she believes in.

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