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Max Schmidheiny

«The scope and purview of the entrepreneur’s “iron law of responsibility“ must go beyond caring for prosperity and sustainability of his enterprise – and include his relationship with the public, with the state, and with the community.»
Max Schmidheiny (1908–1991)

Biography of Max Schmidheiny

Born in 1908.

After matriculating from the cantonal high school in Trogen/AR, he studied at ETH Zurich. In 1931, he graduated with a mechanical engineering degree.

In 1933, he was appointed delegate to the Board of Eternit AG, Niederurnen, and, after the death of his father in 1935, delegate to the Board of Portland Cement Tourah-Le Caire in Egypt and of the Swiss Cement Industry Assocation, as well as of Holderbank Financière Glarus AG, of which he later became the President. In 1935, he became Vice President and in 1954, President of Wild Heerbrugg AG.

In addition to his responsibilities in industry, Max Schmidheiny also undertook various tasks in the public sector. For many years he was President of the school board of Heerbrugg, member of the local council of his home town of Balgach and for two terms of office he was a member of St. Gallen cantonal Parliament.

From 1946-1976, Max Schmidheiny was a member of the Swiss Chamber of Commerce, and a long standing Board member of the Society for the Promotion of Swiss Industry.

He is the founder of tire Adda-Marietta Schmidheiny Foundation in favour of the Schanfigg village Pagig and was for almost two decades President of the supervisory committee of the “Oberfeld” educational establishment in Marbach.

In 1952, he was awarded an honorary doctorate from Basel University, and in 1967 a Dr. h.c. in business studies from St. Gallen Graduate School (now University of St.Gallen). 1978, at the age of 70, Max Schmidheiny founded the Max Schmidheiny Foundation.

Max Schmidheiny passed away on August 19, 1991.

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