George and Julie Mosher, who founded Milwaukee-based National Business Furniture and later became major venture investors, will receive the 2016 BizTimes Lifetime Achievement Award.
The award will be presented to the Moshers at the 2016 BizExpo on Wednesday, May 18, at Potawatomi Hotel & Casino.
George Mosher grew up in the Boston area. He moved to Milwaukee to become the president of Business and Institutional Furniture Company, a small catalog specializing in the church and school market. He held that position for 10 years.
George and Julie were married in 1965. In 1975, they founded National Business Furniture, a catalog distributor of office furniture. Julie was responsible for the company’s catalog. They subsequently purchased Alfax Wholesale Furniture, a distributor of church and school furniture; Office Furniture Center, located in Boston and Chicago; Factory Direct Furniture in Milwaukee; and OfficeFurniture.com, an Internet office furniture company.
The Moshers sold National Business Furniture and the related companies in 2006 to K&K America. The company’s annual sales were $130 million when the Moshers sold it.
After selling the company, the Moshers have focused on venture investments and making philanthropic contributions. Julie has focused her philanthropic efforts on pulmonary lung research.
In 2013, George was inducted into the Wisconsin Investor Hall of Fame. The Moshers have invested millions of dollars into dozens of young companies.
“George Mosher was a ‘super-angel (investor)’ before people were using that term,” Tom Still, president of the Wisconsin Technology Council, said in 2013. “His passion for working with entrepreneurs helps to define him.”
George is a director of BizStarts Milwaukee, the Chamber Theatre, Downtown Milwaukee Rotary and the UWM Library.
The Moshers join an illustrious list of past recipients of the BizTimes Lifetime Achievement award, including: Steve Laughlin, co-founder and chief executive officer of Laughlin Constable; Gary Grunau, real estate developer and president of Grucon Group LLC; Michael Cudahy, founder of Marquette Electronics and philanthropist; Sheldon Lubar, founder and chairman of Lubar & Co. in Milwaukee; Fritz and Debra Usinger of Usinger’s Famous Sausage; Richard Pieper Sr., chairman of PPC Partners Inc.; Stephen Marcus, former CEO of The Marcus Corp.; George Dalton, former CEO of Fiserv Inc.; Robert Kern, former CEO of Generac; Joe Zilber, former CEO of Zilber Ltd.; and Harry Quadracci, former CEO of Quad/Graphics Inc.
The Moshers will be presented the BizTimes Lifetime Achievement Award as part of the Bravo! Entrepreneur/I.Q. (Innovation Quotient) Awards luncheon at BizExpo. The winners of the Bravo! and IQ awards were announced recently by BizTimes. Click here for more information or to register for BizExpo.