Where and when
Jack Miller, the founder and former President/CEO of Quill Corporation is one of the Chicago area’s most prominent and successful entrepreneurs. He built Quill from scratch to dominance and engineered its sale to Staples. Mr. Miller is listed annually in the Crain’s Who’s Who in Chicago Business. After the sale of Quill he is now Chairman of the Board at Successories Inc., and a Managing Member at The Benida Group, LLC and Millbrook Properties, LLC.
In 1956, at age 27, Mr. Miller borrowed $2,000 from his father-in-law and founded Quill Corporation. The first Quill Corporate Headquarters was in an unused coal bin, with kitchen tables as “executive” desks. Forty-two years later, when Mr. Miller sold the company, Quill had become the nation’s largest independent direct marketer of office products, employing over 1,300 people with annual sales in excess of $630 million.
Since his retirement from Quill in January 2000, Mr. Miller has bought into and become chairman of the $54 million business-to-business mail order firm, Successories. He also focuses on real estate development and venture capital investment at Millbrook Properties and The Benida Group. He is also authoring a book on entrepreneurism called “Sweat Equity and Lessons Learned.”
Mr. Miller has been honored with the Spirit of Life Award for the Office Products Council of the City of Hope, the Torch of Liberty award from the Anti-Defamation League of B’nai Brith and the Industrialist of the Year Award from the American-Israel Chamber of Commerce. He has also been elected a Fellow of the Illinois Business Hall of Fame and inducted into the Chicago Business Hall of Fame. In 1998, Mr. Miller received the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.
Mr. Miller graduated from the University of Illinois with a degree in Journalism, with a focus in advertising. He is active with the University of Chicago Medical Center, helping establish a center for the study of Peripheral Neuropathy.