Foodservice Equipment Reports

In Memoriam: Milton Schwartz

Milton Schwartz, the second-generation family member and driving force behind the success of Advance Tabco from 1975 through 2002, passed away July 9. He was 85.

Schwartz started his career with the company in the 1950’s and walked out half a century later, passing it on—without any regrets—to the next generation. In 1976, halfway through his tenure at Advance and while 37,000 ft. aloft, he wrote down his strategy for the growth and success of the family business on the back of a napkin. Those principles still guide the Edgewood, N.Y., company and the numerous fourth-generation family members working there.

Schwartz was active in the foodservice equipment and supplies industry, taking on leadership positions and always available to assist his fellow manufacturers.  If there was a question about OSHA, NSF or a new piece of machinery, the answer was usually, “Ask Milt;” he was always more than willing to share information (at times to the chagrin of the current officers of the company).

Those at Advance Tabco remember him as incredible marketer, yet say he never quite grasped the nuances of sales, or simply, chose not to.  “One year, after notification of a price increase was sent out to the trade, a leading dealer in the industry responded, ‘We don’t accept price increases.’  Milt’s response was simple and straight to the point. ‘Ok, then we will not accept your purchase orders.’ Classic Milt.  He will be missed.”

“I’m honored to have known Milton Schwartz for nearly 35 years. He was quiet, gentle and tough all at the same time,” comments FER Publisher Robin Ashton. “With his wife, Alice, he helped build one of the most successful privately held foodservice equipment companies in the business, a business still run by their children, Penny Hutner and Dan Schwartz.”

Son-in-law Al Alderman, husband of Schwartz’s daughter, Wendy, and Penny’s son-in-law Craig Cooper, are among the many family members working at Advance Tabco.

In addition to his children, Schwartz is survived by his wife and business partner of 61 years, Alice Schwartz; a brother and sister; and “too many grandchildren, great grandchildren, nieces, nephews and friends to mention.”

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