News & Media
Bethlehem, PA Declares February 15 as “Bob Born Day”
Friday, February 15, 2019
Bethlehem, PA — February 15, 2019
For 87 of the company’s 96 years in business, Just Born Quality Confections has been the sweetest place in Bethlehem, Pennsylvania. In honor of the company’s former leader, Bob Born, and his lasting impact on the community, the Mayor of Bethlehem, Robert J. Donchez, has proclaimed the official start of Easter, February 15, as “Bob Born Day.”
Bob Born, also known as the “Father of PEEPS®,” joined his father, Sam and Uncles Irv and Jack Shaffer in the family business in 1946. Bob became the President of Just Born Quality Confections in 1959, and during his long tenure, made many significant contributions to Just Born. Most notably, he invented the PEEPS® chick machine in 1954, which mechanized the production process. In addition, he created the recipe for HOT TAMALES® cinnamon flavored candies in 1950 and created a technique which significantly increased the rate of production of the MIKE AND IKE® and HOT TAMALES® candies.
“The City of Bethlehem is proud to be the home of the most beloved Easter candy brand – PEEPS®!” said Robert J. Donchez, Mayor of Bethlehem. “Just Born helps to improve our community through employee volunteer programs and generous donations. We thank them for their nearly nine decades of service to the community.”
“We are truly honored to have my Dad be recognized by the City of Bethlehem, and we are thankful for his many years of service to Just Born,” said Ross Born, Bob’s son and Just Born’s CEO. “Thanks to his careful stewardship of the business, the company grew and flourished in the community we’ve called home for so long,” said David Shaffer, Bob’s cousin and Just Born’s Chairman.
Bob graduated from Liberty High School and then went on to Lehigh University, where he graduated with honors earning a Bachelor of Science degree in Engineering Physics in 1944. Shortly after graduation, he served in the Navy specializing in radar and electronics technology.
“The PEEPS® Brand wouldn’t be what it is today without Bob’s clever invention that increased production exponentially for the company,” said Matt Pye, Senior Vice President of Sales and Marketing at Just Born Quality Confections. “PEEPS® flourished and became an iconic candy synonymous with Easter and many other holiday celebrations for generations. We’d like to thank Bob for enabling us to efficiently produce PEEPS® which has been the number one non-chocolate candy brand at Easter for more than 20 years.”
For more information on Just Born Quality Confections, visit www.justborn.com.
About Just Born Quality Confections:
Just Born Quality Confections is a third-generation family-owned company and is the maker of some of America’s most beloved and iconic brands – PEEPS®, MIKE AND IKE®, HOT TAMALES® and GOLDENBERG’S® PEANUT CHEWS®. In 1923, the founder, Sam Born, opened a small candy-making and retail store in Brooklyn, New York, where he marketed the freshness of his daily-made candy with a sign that declared, “Just Born.” Together with Born’s brothers-in-law, Irv and Jack Shaffer, the company thrived in spite of the economic depression of the 1930s and, in 1932, moved its operations to Bethlehem, PA, which is still home to their iconic candy brands. All Just Born candies are proudly made in the U.S.A. For more information, please visit www.justborn.com (and see the breadth of candy and high-quality branded items at www.peepsandcompany.com) Follow us: facebook.com/JustBornInc, twitter.com/JustBornInc.