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edward m. knabusch

Edward M. Knabusch (b.1900 d.1988) began making doll furniture in his garage and soon converted to porch furniture, developing an adjustable chair which he sold retail through a store he opened with his cousin Edward Shoemaker.

When a buyer suggested upholstering the adjustable wood chair, the cousins built their own plant in Monroe, Mich., to produce the first recliners. It was the launch of an entirely new industry, as well as of the now $500 million La-Z-Boy Chair Co. He was an innovator who conveyorized early and invented tools and mechanisms for motion furniture. An outstanding marketing man, in a relatively short time he changed La-Z-Boy from an unknown phrase to a nationally recognized household name.

He initiated one of the industry's first employee benefit programs, and was also a man of his community, dedicating considerable time as well as funds to the YMCA, Mercy Hospital, housing for seniors and the handicapped, as well as his church.