Frank W. Steere, Jr. (1916 – 2005)
FOUNDER AND FRIEND
Frank was born in Detroit, Michigan the son of Jessie Hunter Steere and Frank Walter Steere, Sr. – spending his boyhood years in Scarsdale, N.Y where he earned the prestigious Eagle Scout award. His family moved to Pontiac, Michigan before his senior year of high school and Frank, a natural leader from a young age, was elected senior class President despite being a newcomer to the school. Frank went on to graduate in 1938 from the University of Michigan with a degree in Chemical Engineering. Following graduation, Frank spent three years conducting agricultural experiments before taking a job with the Akron, OH based – BF Goodrich Chemical Company – in their emerging vinyl plastisol business.
Intrigued with the possibilities of this revolutionary material, Frank quit his job and started Steere Enterprises in the basement of his Akron, Ohio home in 1949. Frank’s strong core values, vision and entrepreneurial spirit enabled him to build a successful business that he presided over for 32 years, until passing it over to the second generation in 1981.
Despite the demands of being an entrepreneur, Frank’s philosophy of life was always service above self. He was passionate about giving back to the community and making the world a better place. Frank served as President of The Akron Community Council, Akron Rotary Club, Akron General Medical Center, Akron Summit County Library, Stan Hywet Hall and Gardens, The Akron Council on World Affairs, The University of Akron Hilltoppers, the Congregation at Trinity Lutheran Church, and the United Community Council of Summit County – predecessor to the United Way. As President of the Library Board for which he served over 30 years, Frank’s efforts led to the construction of the new library located in downtown Akron in the 1960’s. Frank always felt that a city’s library should be on the main street in town. In recognition of his devotion to the community and his fellow man, Frank was awarded the distinguished Bert A. Polsky Humanitarian Award in 1981.
Today, Frank’s passion and beliefs remain with Steere Enterprises – as we continue to build our company for generations to come.