Louis B. Raffel, who passed away on December 7, 2018, at the age of 85, led the American Egg Board (AEB) for 30 years until his retirement in 2006, always driving demand for eggs and egg products and serving with exceptional intellect and values. As a visionary for the egg program, Raffel was responsible for the famous slogan, “The Incredible Edible Egg” that launched in 1976.
Following is AEB’s memorial of Raffel:
Raffel realized the value and need for nutrition research from the American Egg Board’s beginnings, though friends remember him saying that it would take almost 25 years to change the dialogue related to eggs’ role in healthy living. Today, decades later, the success of the American Egg Board’s Egg Nutrition Center continues to benefit from his insight.
In 1977, Raffel started the springtime tradition of presenting the First Lady of the United States with the Commemorative Egg on behalf of U.S. egg farmers. By 1990, this presentation become part of the White House Easter Roll and remains so today.
In 1983, he oversaw the hiring of Sue Saltsberg, the American Egg Board’s long-time mail clerk with special needs. Sue continues to work at the American Egg Board — living a very successful independent life — and relishes supporting AEB’s marketing efforts for 35+ years. Raffel also recognized the talents of Howard Helmer by organizing the Guinness World Record event for Fastest Omelet Making that made Howard The Omelet King, and positioned him as the egg ambassador promoting eggs with the media and consumers throughout the country.
Raffel received many recognitions throughout his career including the Samuel B. Shapiro award by the Chicago Forum in 1993 for his outstanding service and accomplishments in association management. Raffel also received the Urner Barry Egg Person of the Year award in 2006 in recognition of his outstanding service to the egg industry and work in promoting The Incredible Edible Egg.
Many friends shared the word “gentleman” when remembering Raffel and noted career-long friendships that he formed with so many. “Whether you personally knew Raffel and take comfort in the privilege and honor to have called him a ‘friend’ or are newer to the egg industry, we’ve all collectively benefitted from Lou’s vision, service and advances on behalf of the U.S. egg industry,” AEB said.