In Memoriam: Bernard S. Speckhart, White Conveyors

Staff Writer |

Chairman/CEO served 64 years in the family business

KENILWORTH, N.J. — Bernard S. Speckhart, chairman and CEO of White Conveyors, passed away Sept. 9, the company reports. 

Speckhart was a true leader and innovative inventor in garment and linen material-handling solutions, the company says. His patented conveyor designs revolutionized the industry. Under his direction, more than 100,000 conveyors have been installed in the United States and throughout the world.

“The loss of our beloved father and company leader is profound,” says Mary Speckhart, his daughter and president of White Conveyors and Speed Check. “He will be remembered by the many who loved him as a kind and generous man who cared deeply for his family. My father was dedicated to the success of White, as well as to each and every member of our extended White family. 

“Bernie’s vision, leadership and generosity will be missed immensely, but his legacy will live on for many generations to come.”

In 1949, Speckhart graduated with a Bachelor of Science in mechanical engineering from Newark College of Engineering (now New Jersey Institute of Technology) located in Newark, N.J. He joined White Machine Co. in 1954 under the tutelage of his father, Stephen Speckhart, after having served in the U.S. Air Force during the Korean War. 

From the very beginning, the company says Speckhart’s vision was to design cutting-edge conveyor systems to help companies increase production and save labor. In 1984, White Machine established White Conveyors, and full ownership was transferred to him from his father. 

In 2008, under his leadership, White acquired Speed Check Conveyor, located in Decatur, Ga., and strengthened the commercial and industrial laundry divisions of the company. Speckhart spent a total of 64 years at the family business. 

In addition to his esteemed professional career, he was a devout member of the Catholic church, served the Boy Scouts of America, and actively volunteered in the community.

A true family man, Speckhart is survived by his beloved wife, M. Lorraine Speckhart, seven devoted children, 22 grandchildren, two great grandchildren, and a large and loving extended family. Several of his children hold key positions at the company. Mary was named president of White and Speed Check in 2014. His sons, B. Stephen and John, currently serve as vice presidents.

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