Obituary of Norman M. Hinerfeld
HINERFELD—Norman M., an apparel manufacturing executive, civic leader, and devoted father, husband and friend, died on May 19,2023 in Westchester County NY.
He was 94 years old. Norman is survived by his wife, Ruth Hinerfeld (nee Gordon); daughter, Lee; and his sons, Thomas (Grainne Ward) and Joshua (Andrea Binder); and two grandchildren, Olivia and Samuel. He was preceded in death by his younger brother, Robert Elliot Hinerfeld, who died in 2019.
Upon graduating from Harvard Business School in 1953, Norman went to work for Goldman Sachs in the underwriting “boiler room.” After a stint as a first lieutenant in the Finance Corps of the U.S. Army, Norman embarked on a multi-decade career in the apparel industry.
Norman spent a year working at Julius Kayser & Company, a lingerie firm of which his father, Benjamin, had served as executive vice president. Early in his career, Norman earned credit as co-author of two patents for automation of apparel manufacturing equipment. In 1958, Norman helped orchestrate the merger of Julius Kayser & Company and Chester H. Roth Hosiery. The merged firm became the Kayser-Roth Corporation. Norman held various operational and executive leadership roles there, including president and chair of the executive committee. He was instrumental in building the company into one of the largest apparel manufacturing companies in the world. Gulf & Western acquired Kayser-Roth in 1975. Norman subsequently negotiated the purchase of multiple divisions of Kayser-Roth from Gulf & Western, forming Wingspread Corporation. Later in his career, he acquired and ran two manufacturing businesses in his capacity as chief executive officer of the Delta Group.
Possessing both an insatiable curiosity and commitment to mentorship, Norman coached and advised numerous nonprofit and for-profit organizations. He served as a mediator, arbitrator, member of the executive committee, and board chair of the American Arbitration Association. He chaired the International Policy Committee of the United States Chamber of Commerce, the New York metro section of Business Executives for National Security (BENS), and the board of the American Apparel Manufacturing Association. He served on the boards of the Stern School of Business at New York University, Animal Medical Center of New York, the International Apparel Federation, and various corporations.
Norman was “an impressive model of how a director can perform his duty of overseeing the financial health of the organization he serves diligently, constructively, and with inexhaustible good humor,” said John Kerr, Chairperson of the American Arbitration Association.
Norman forged many lifelong friendships both on and off the tennis court. He was a fixture on the clay courts at Beach Point Club in Mamaroneck, NY for over five decades.
Norman Martin Hinerfeld was born on May 17, 1929, in New York City, the son of Benjamin and Anne (nee Blitz). The family settled in Passaic, NJ. Norman graduated from Harvard College, magna cum laude in 1951 and earned membership into the Phi Betta Kappa Society. He graduated from Harvard Business School in 1953, where he was a Baker Scholar.
Norman met Ruth Jean Gordon during a Harvard dance. They married on Christmas Day in Boston in 1952 and were married for over 70 years. They kept the spark of their relationship alive through shared passions for travel, reading, civic engagement, and miniature schnauzers. Norman was especially fond of his last canine companion, Riddle.
In lieu of flowers and gifts, please make charitable donations in Norman Hinerfeld’s honor to your favorite charity. Email: LTJhinerfeld@gmail.com.
If you would like to attend a gathering honoring Norman, you may join his family Tuesday, May 23, 2023 at the John J. Fox Funeral Home, Inc. 2080 Boston Post Road Larchmont, NY 10538 from 4:00 PM until 6:00 PM.