Class of 2013
On January 22, 1945, in Chicago, Robert M. Edelheit was born to Gertrude and Ben. Five years later, Bob and his older brother Lonnie were joined by a sister, Ellen.
Bob graduated in 1963 from Von Steuben High School in Chicago and finished two years at Southern Illinois University in Carbondale, IL, before leaving to serve with the U.S. Army’s 282nd Assault Helicopter Company, the “Black Cats,” in Vietnam.
During his tour of duty, CWO2 Edelheit was awarded the Distinguished Flying Cross for heroism in combat, the Bronze Star, the Air Medal with 15 Oak Leaf Clusters, the Vietnam Service and Vietnam Campaign Medals, the National Defense Service Medal, the Army Aviator Badge and other decorations.
Discharged in 1969, he returned to Southern Illinois University to complete his bachelor’s degree in Marketing in 1970.
Meanwhile, Bob married Janis Kramer in December 1968; they are the parents of Lisa and Matthew and grandparents of Jake, Ellory, Hannah and Connor.
His career in confectionery began in 1973 when he responded to a newspaper ad for an Assistant Production Manager to the Division Vice-President of Reese Finer Foods. Bob then joined Charlotte Charles, Inc. in 1980 as Director of Gift Operations, and later served as Candy Land’s Vice-President, Sales, from 1991 to 1997. In 1998, he moved to Candy Tech as Partner and Vice-President, Sales, leaving in 2000 to join Hanson Faso Sales & Marketing, Inc. as Partner and Executive Vice- President.
Earning a wide range of industry broker sales awards, he also received Hanson Faso’s Meritorious Service Award in 2003 and its Greatest Dollar Sales Increase Award in 2006. Bob is a member of the NCA Broker Advisory Committee.
Reflecting on his 40 years in the industry, Bob cites becoming a partner in his own business, participating in the development of Gummi Savers and making his first candy sale to the Middle East as highlights of his career.
For those considering a career in candy, he suggests:”This a vibrant industry and a fun group of people. There are opportunities to advance if you set a goal to be persistent, keep the needs of your customers foremost and find creative solutions to their problems.”