We’re sad to report the Oregon nursery has suffered a major loss with the passing of Norbert Kinen. The past OAN president, former general manager of J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co., and member of the Oregon Nurseries’ Hall of Fame died Saturday. He was 78 years old.
Services will be held at 4 p.m. Thursday, Sept. 1 at St. Hentry Catholic Church, 346 N.W. First St., Gresham, Ore. Prior to that, there will be a viewing from 4–8 p.m. Wednesday, Aug. 31 at Gresham Memorial Chapel, 257 S.E. Roberts, Gresham, Ore.
Kinen was OAN president in 1995. After serving as general manager and vice president for J. Frank Schmidt & Son Co. for 25 years, he retired in 2000. He was inducted into the Oregon Nurseries Hall of Fame in 2002. However, his love of trees and plants continued even in retirement. He started his own specialty nursery on 11 acres, Kinen’s Big & Phat Special Plants, which specialized in selling trees of unique character. He was profiled in Digger magazine in May 2006 as part of a story on small nurseries. His business also received coverage in a September 2006 Digger article on specimen-sized trees.
Please feel free to leave your comments on the legacy of Norbert Kinen.
UPDATE 8/30/2011: Here’s a feature article (PDF) by Nancy Buley that Digger published when Norbert was inducted into the Oregon Nurseries’ Hall of Fame.