A Port Morris businessman has been laid to rest, leaving behind his activist spirit that will be missed.
Herbert Sedler, the founder of Paper Enterprises, Inc., a Port Morris-based supplier of paper products to the food services industry, died recently, the company announced. He was 84.
Sedler was active in communities throughout the Bronx, expanding his influence beyond Port Morris.
Today the company has a staff of 160, including 30 salespeople, and a fleet of 25 trucks.
He was a board member of the South Bronx Overall Economic Development Corporation (SoBro) and a member and major supporter of the New York Tennis Club in Throggs Neck.
The board of directors of the New York Tennis Club released a statement about Sedler’s devotion to the organization for decades.
“We at the New York Tennis Club were terribly saddened by the death of our longtime member and friend, Herb Sedler; in fact, many attended his funeral and, in the days following, paid condolence calls to his wife and family in tribute to him, sharing warm stories and memories,” the statement read.
“When Herb was on the board of directors of our club, he worked tirelessly as publicity chairperson to attract new members and was indeed successful at that endeavor,” the statement continued. “As an avid tennis player, he enjoyed playing doubles and mixed doubles as well as attending our social and competitive round-robins. Together with his lovely wife, Geri, Herb also brought good cheer to all our holiday parties, and he will be sorely missed by all at the club.”
Former SoBRO senior vice-president Neil Pariser recalled that as one of the organization’s board members, Sedler served on the development and fiscal committees.
“Herb was a very engaged individual,” said Pariser. “He was running a business, but he always took the time to work at the community level as well.”
Pariser recollected that Sedler was a partner to the SoBRO, and that through his company, Sedler tried to uplift the borough through his company through some trying times in the southern part of the Bronx.
“When the south Bronx was at its lowest point, Herb was in there battling to keep it going,” said Pariser, adding “he kept the jobs here, he kept the businesses here when so many others were packing up and moving, and you needed the Herb Sedlers of the world to give this area some (stability).”
Additionally, Sedler was vice-president of the Port Morris Local Development Corporation.
Sedler founded Paper Enterprises in 1961, and gradually expanded the business, eventually absorbing several of his competitors, the company stated.
He was a veteran of the United States Army, serving from 1951 to 1953. During his time in the service he was part of the First Calvary Division and stationed in Korea and Japan.
He also helped foster new generations of entrepreneurs, serving as an ‘Executive on Campus’ and mentoring a team of students in the entrepreneurial competition.
Selder is survived by his wife, a retired New York City schoolteacher; his son Jordan, president of Paper Enterprises; and his daughter Lauren, an art historian and dealer in Bath, England. He also leaves behind four grandchildren, Alex, Jesse, Oliver, and Victoria.