Sudbury mining supply entrepreneur John Herold has died

The founder of Herold Supply was instrumental in founding MineConnect, a regional mining supply group

John Herold, a pioneering mining supply entrepreneur in Sudbury, has died at the age of 80.

Herold was the founder of Herold Supply and a founding board member of the Sudbury Area Mining Supply and Service Association (SAMSSA), now known as MineConnect.

Herold died in Sudbury on September 16.

Born in Worcester, Massachusetts, Herold moved to Toronto as a child, where he attended St. Michael’s College, followed by St. Francis Xavier University in Nova Scotia, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree. Herold married in 1964 and eventually settled in Sudbury with his first wife Judy.

His career started in sales at Shell Oil but in 1975 he decided to start his own business and Herold Supply was formed.

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The company began supplying fuel to Sudbury’s two major nickel mining companies, INCO (now Vale) and Falconbridge (now Glencore). It was Herold who introduced the Gasboy fuel management system to the Sudbury market, a closed system dispensing fuel to corporate fleets.

Herold’s first store on St. Jerome Street, near the intersection of Notre Dame Avenue and Lasalle Boulevard, was just 400 square feet and had one clerk. A year later he had to expand, adding another 600 square meters to the store and hiring two more employees.

In 1978, barely three years after opening, Herold expanded again, adding another 2,000 square meters to the store. Customers at this time included fleets for the City of Sudbury and the Sudbury Police Service.

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In 1990 Herold moved to a new location on Sutherland Avenue in the city’s West End and his son Todd joined the business.

Herold Supply celebrated its 40th anniversary in 2015.

Today, the company rebuilds, repairs and replaces all makes and models of starters, alternators, air diaphragm pumps and DC motors. It is also an industrial wholesaler supplying material handling equipment, shelving, racking and refueling equipment such as fuel nozzles, hoses, camlocks and more.

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Recognizing the opportunities for collaboration between Sudbury’s various mining supply and service companies, Herold was one of four founding directors of SAMSSA when it was formed in the early 2000’s.

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The not-for-profit industry group, which started with just a handful of members, pledged to raise Sudbury’s profile in the industry.

The organization now known as MineConnect now has well over 200 members from across Northern Ontario who export their products and expertise to mining sites around the world.

Today, after 47 years in business, Herold Supply continues under the leadership of Todd Herold, serving companies in the mining, forestry, construction and other industries.

A celebration of life for John Herold was held in Sudbury on September 22nd. Read his full obituary here.

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