Harry J. Sonneborn

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Harry J. Sonneborn
Born Harold J. Sonneborn
(1916-06-12)June 12, 1916
Evansville, Indiana, U.S.
Died September 21, 1992(1992-09-21) (aged 76)
Mobile County, Alabama, U.S.
Nationality American
Occupation Business executive, President of Finances, Tastee Freeze, President McDonald's (1955–1967)
Years active 1939–1992
Spouse(s) June (divorced, 2 children)
Aloyis Keister (?–1992, his death)

Harry J. Sonneborn (June 12, 1916 – September 21, 1992) was an American businessman, best known for being the first president and chief executive of McDonald's Corporation.

Life and career[edit]

Sonneborn was born in Indiana, the son of Minnie (Greenbaum) and Mark Harry Joseph.[1][2] He was adopted and raised by his father's sister, Jeanette (Joseph), and her husband, Louis Sonneborn, in New York City.[3]

Work with McDonald's[edit]

A former vice president of finances at Tastee Freeze, Sonneborn approached Ray Kroc with the concept of Kroc owning the land that McDonald outlets were to be built on and then leasing that land to the franchisee. Sonneborn rose to be McDonald's president until he resigned in 1967 due to a dispute with CEO Kroc.

Other business interests[edit]

After leaving McDonald's, Sonneborn continued to be involved in the business world through the stock market, capital investments, and banking.[citation needed] He and his wife Aloyis founded several philanthropic foundations.[citation needed]

Further reading[edit]

  • Love, John F. (1995). McDonald's: Behind the Arches. New York: Bantam Books. ISBN 0-553-34759-4. 


External links[edit]