Wellington The Magazine July 2010

Page 53


German Immigrant Runs A Medical Supply Company From Wellington STORY BY MATTHEW AUERBACH  PHOTOS BY SUSAN LERNER


avaria. Munich. New York. Wellington. It has been a long, interesting trip for Frank Suess. No doubt about it — Germany’s loss is the village’s gain. Since 1993, Suess has been furnishing Wellington residents and businesses throughout the United States with medical supplies to treat, monitor and manage diabetes through his three local mail-order companies — Prescriptions Plus, Diabetic Support Program and Pharma Supply, all based out of 3381 Fairlane Farms Road in Wellington. Suess continues to thrive, due in no small part to his ability to see a need and fill it with a mix of passion and professionalism. This potent recipe for success is the reason Frank Suess is Wellington The Magazine’s Entrepreneur of the Year Award nominee for July.

trade as an industrial engineer. During that time, his entrepreneurial side surfaced and he started his own home improvement company. But the biggest change in his life began with a simple visit to Wellington.

The Bavarian-born Suess didn’t set out to establish a career in the medical supply business. “I went to the University of Munich and got my master’s degree in industrial engineering,” he recalled. He came away with more than an education. “I met a woman named Herta who eventually became my wife,” he said. “That was 41 years ago.”

“In the late 1980s, Herta and I paid a visit to friends who had recently moved to Wellington,” he said. “We immediately took a liking to it. We found the uncongested, neighborly feel of the area very appealing. We liked the school system as well; that was very important to us since we had two teenaged boys at the time. So in 1989, we left Long Island and moved to the village.”

Frank and Herta had a plan: They would come to the United States, stay for a few years to check out the job market and then go back to Munich to settle down. But you know what they say about the bestlaid plans…

There was one problem, however: There weren’t many manufacturing companies in Palm Beach County, which meant industrial engineers weren’t in great demand. Suess’ inner entrepreneur surfaced yet again.

“We moved to the Lower East Side of Manhattan in 1968,” he said. “We loved it down there. We’d go to Delancey Street to eat at Ratner’s kosher dairy restaurant all the time.”

“I started my own respiratory company in a spare bedroom the same year we got here,” he said. “I delivered oxygen and respiratory supplies to people with emphysema and other breathing disorders.”

The Suesses moved to Brooklyn a few years later where Frank found work as an engineer, and Herta took a job as a bookkeeper. When she became pregnant, they did what many New Yorkers who were about to start a family do: they moved to Long Island.

Four years later, Suess sold National Home Respiratory to a large national company.

For the better part of two decades, Suess plied his

However, the experience had left its mark and he was determined to stay in the medical supplies business. Suess returned to the spare bedroom and within a few months, Diabetic Support Program was born.


July-44-47 - Entrepreneur.indd 45

45 45

6/24/2010 10:00:15 AM

Issuu converts static files into: digital portfolios, online yearbooks, online catalogs, digital photo albums and more. Sign up and create your flipbook.