Robert Oral Aders
Robert Oral Aders died in March 2020 at the age of 92. Born in Parke County IN in 1927, he graduated from Hagerstown High School, received a BS in Business Administration from Miami University and a law degree from Indiana University in 1951. While at IU he served on the Law Review and was a Teaching Fellow. He then served as Judge Advocate General in the US Navy, Far East Command during the Korean War where he was based in Japan. After several years at the Justice Dept in Washington, DC he began his career at Kroger, serving in a number of executive positions before being elected Chairman of the Board in 1970. He served in that capacity until 1974 when he moved back to Washington, DC.
During his Kroger career he was trustee of Ohio Wesleyan University and a member of the advisory boards of Indiana Law School, Miami University School of Business and University of Cincinnati Medical School. Active in industry affairs, he was an officer and director of the National Association of Food Chains, Super Market Institute and the American Retail Federation. At the federal level he was advisor to the White House Office of Emergency Preparedness, served on the Wage and Price Commission and as Vice Chairman of the National Business Council for Consumer Affairs.
He was Undersecretary of Labor under President Gerald Ford, later serving as Acting Secretary of Labor.
He was President and CEO of the Food Marketing Institute in Washington, DC, from its founding in 1976 to his retirement in 1993. During his FMI tenure he worked and lectured extensively in Europe, Latin America and throughout the Pacific Rim, eventually becoming director and fellow at several international food associations. After retiring from FMI he started an international consulting firm and served on several boards.
Robert O Aders is survived by his five children with the late Marguerite Herschede Aders: Tara Aders, Linda Aders, Kitty Brown (Mike), Rob Aders (Kay), Jenny Schneider (Ferd), and by his step-son Allan Karas (Denise), twelve grandchildren and six great grandchildren. His wife Tabitha Simpson Aders is recently deceased.
Published in The Cincinnati Enquirer from Mar. 4 to Mar. 5, 2021.