Melvin Gordon, who was head of Tootsie Roll since 1962, passed away at the age of 95. His wife Ellen, the company’s largest shareholder, will be taking over as CEO, according to the Forward. The timeless candy was invented in 1896 and was the brainchild of Leo Hirschfeld. When the candy creation became a public company in the 1920s, Ellen Gordon’s parents bought it. in addition to Tootsie Rolls, the company produced unforgettable favorites such as Dots, Charms, Double Bubble, Charleston Chew, Cella’s Chocolates and Sugar Babies.
“Everything I think I see becomes a Tootsie Roll to me.” Anyone who was a kid in the 60s and the 70s remembers that jingle with the blatant psychedelic theme in the commercial as a kids hallucinate that their entire world is becoming a Tootsie Roll playland. In addition to Tootsie Rolls, the company produced unforgettable favorites such as Dots, Charms, Double Bubble, Charleston Chew, Cella’s Chocolates and Sugar Babies.
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The shares were up recently 7%, although the stock was down 3% in 2014. There has been speculation that Tootsie Roll could be taken over. The company has a market cap of $1.94 billion. The company, however, has been in the family for nearly a century, so a buyout would be sweet sorrow.
Melvin Gordon’s sister Natalie passed away in 2010 and was a top official with the New York Jewish Federation.