Mike Burkett, the founder of Ohio-based Burkett Restaurant Equipment & Supplies, passed away peacefully on March 29 following a 34-year battle with multiple sclerosis. He was at home surrounded by his family.
Burkett is known throughout the industry and community as a sincere and deeply caring husband, father, friend, and business leader. At the age of 20, he began reconditioning and offering used restaurant equipment in Toledo, Ohio, and in 1977 he launched Burkett Restaurant Equipment & Supplies.
“Mike Burkett was an extraordinarily resilient and accomplished entrepreneur who built a company that still represents and practices the same principles he brought to life more than 44 years ago,” Burkett Restaurant Equipment said in a statement. “Mike loved every aspect of business and relished time spent at the office even after losing his mobility to multiple sclerosis in 1996. Those of us who had the opportunity to work under him will remember his exceptional work ethic, diligence in investing every dollar back into the business, commitment to his customers, suppliers, employees, and family, and his unwavering desire to help local business owners achieve their dreams through equipment deals, coaching, and education.”
Burkett’s vision for the company is continued by his son, Jameel Burkett, who was named the company’s president and CEO in 2011.