William Sibley “Bill” Marvin, the longtime president of Marvin Windows and Doors, died Aug. 31 at his home in Warroad, Minn. He just turned 92 years old last week.
Marvin, who was born Aug. 25, 1917, began his career at what was then Marvin Lumber and Cedar Company in 1939. He was the eighth employee at the firm, which soon began making custom wood and door frames.
According to the company, Bill Marvin “later pushed to expand the offering to complete windows and doors,” creating Marvin Windows and Doors and becoming its president and chairman in 1960. “Under his leadership, the company grew every year except 1961, when the Warroad factory burned to the ground."
"Bill Marvin had the vision to see that you could create a national market for custom millwork," said Frank Anton, CEO of Hanley Wood, the publisher of BUILDER. "He found a way to reach a thousand markets of one before it was fashionable. He found a way to bring affordable custom millwork into the hands of builders nationwide. He probably created the pre-eminent custom millwork brand in the industry, one synonymous with architectural style."
During his career, Bill Marvin received numerous honors for his business leadership and contributions. Among others, BUILDER Magazine named him one of the most influential building industry leaders of the 20th century, Twin Cities Business magazine inducted him into its 2007 Minnesota Business Hall of Fame, and Bemidji State University gave him the Distinguished Minnesotan Award. His contributions were noted locally as well; Warroad High School, from which he graduated, honored him with its Alumni Outstanding Achievement Award in 1995.
He also graduated from the University of Minnesota.
Marvin is survived by his six adult children, 17 grandchildren, and 25 great-grandchildren. He is preceded in death by his wife Margaret, who he married in 1941, two infant children, and one granddaughter.
The funeral service for Bill Marvin will be held Friday, Sept. 4, at 11 a.m. in Warroad. For more information, please contact the Helgeson Funeral Chapel in Warroad.
Alison Rice is senior editor, online, at BUILDER magazine.