Howard Schultz is an American businessman, fairly recognized as the executive chairman of Starbucks today. Back in the days, he was an owner of Seattle SuperSonics, a member of the Board of Directors at Square, Inc. and co-founded Maveron, an investment group, with Dan Levitan. Now, he is the executive chairman of Starbucks, a famous coffee company after resigning as the CEO of Starbucks in 2016. In that same year, he was also ranked as the 232nd richest person in the United States by a source named Forbes Magazine.
Early Life and Education:
Born in Brooklyn, New York on 19 July 1953 into a Jewish family, Howard Schultz’s father, Fred Schultz, was an ex-United States Army trooper and a truck driver while his mother, Elaine, was a housewife. He has two younger siblings; a sister and a brother. Schultz had a natural talent as an athlete as he spent most of his time playing sports. With this talent, an athlete scholarship to Northern Michigan University was rewarded after graduating from Canarsie High School in 1971. In 1975, Schultz graduated from Northern Michigan University with a bachelor degree in speech communications.
After graduating, Howard Schultz managed to find a job as a salesman and got promoted as a full sales representative. He then became a general manager for a Swedish drip coffee maker manufacturer in 1979, where he was held accountable for the operations in the US with the number of twenty staffs. The number of plastic cone filters bought by Starbucks Coffee Company caught Shultz’s eye as he was intrigued to why this coffee-bean shop would’ve bought such a huge sum. He took the initiative to visit the coffee-bean shop that he was so interested about in Seattle. Impressed with the company’s knowledge on coffee, he kept in contact with the company over the next year, expressing interest in working with them. Soon, he joined the team in Starbucks as the Director of Marketing.
Whilst on a business trip to Milan, Italy for Starbucks Coffee Company, Schultz realized that coffee bars were present on almost every street he was on. Soon, he learned that coffee bars weren’t only serving usual coffees but instead, they also served as a great hangout or meeting space for working and non-working people around. Once he returned from the trip, he persuaded the owners of Starbucks, including Jerry Baldwin, to serve traditional espresso beverages as an additional offer to the current offers like coffee drinks and teas. The first try of the café concept was successful however, the owners refused to spread the idea out company wide, clarifying they did not want to get into restaurant business. Schultz left Starbucks out of frustration in 1985 and was determined to open the first store to start the business. He needed $4000,000 in order to open the store but simply did not have the amount as his wife was pregnant with their first baby. Schultz was offered help from the owners of Starbucks Coffee Company and received $100,000 from a doctor who was impressed by Schultz’s energy to “take a risk”. Within a year, he managed to gather all the money needed to open the first store and named the store after a Milanese newspaper, II Giornale. Schultz’s store serves ice cream with coffee, a space with little seating and also opera music as the background to portray an Italian experience. Two years down the road, with the help of investors, Schultz purchased Starbucks Coffee Company, merging II Giornale with it and renamed the company to Starbucks. Starbucks gained massive expansion across the United States as Schultz reached beyond points to aggressively expand the company. Later on, Schultz wrote two books regarding the company.
After an eight-year hiatus, Schultz returned as CEO of Starbucks in 2008. By this period of time, he was earning a huge sum that consists of 7 digits, almost to 8, which included a base salary.
Schultz received multiple awards along his career path. Some examples of the awards he received are the “National Leadership Award” back in 1999 for philanthropic and educational efforts to battle AIDS, the “International Distinguished Entrepreneur Award” from the University of Manitoba for his outstanding success and commendable conduct of Starbucks in 2004, the “First Responsible Capitalism Award” and “Award for Ethics in Business” in 2007, and the “National Equal Justice Award” in 2017.
Other than awards, he became Fortune Magazine’s “2011 Business Person of the Year” for his initiatives in the economy and job market. Schultz was also invited to speak at the Arizona State University commencement ceremony in 2017. He was also presented with an honorary Doctor of Humane Letters degree.
Schultz married Sheri Kersch in 1982 and both have a son and daughter, Jordan and Addison Schultz. Jordan is a sportswriter for The Huffington Post and Addison is a social worker, involved in the LGBT community as Schultz endorses same-sex marriage.
Howard, together with his wife, Sheri, co-founded the Schultz Family Foundation in 1996. The primary focus of the foundation is on helping people unleash and showcase their potential, remove any barriers to success as well as become