As a nutrition advocate and a baker, Charles Matthaei has spent his entire life promoting the health benefits of whole grains. He inherited his passion for nutrition from his father William. His family baking heritage extends as far back as 1686 in Marsburg, Germany.
In 1872 Henry Matthaei opened a bakery in Kansas City, MO. His son William, a master baker relocated to Tacoma Washington where he established the Matthaei Bread Company and the Butternut Bakery. In 1927 he acquired the Roman Meal Company from Dr. Robert Jackson, a nutritional supplement business based upon the ancient Roman legionnaire’s diet of whole grains, which the Matthaei family would transform into a nationally recognized symbol for health and nutrition.
For over thirty years, Charles Matthaei has been the driving force behind the Roman Meal Healthy Eating Plan, one of the first national efforts to emphasize the initial Dietary Guidelines and the Food Pyramid. He developed a life-long relationship with noted cardiologist Dr. George Christakis. Together they developed a series of consumer education programs based upon the health benefits of whole grains. Charles would eventually align his interests and knowledge in nutrition with the United States Olympic Committee, the Special Olympics and the Council for Agricultural Science and Technology. He has served as a board member for the American Heart Association of Pierce County, Washington. His professional involvement includes active memberships in the American Association of Cereal Chemists, the American Bakers Association and is a 55-year member of the American Society of Baking.
Together, the Matthaei family’s passions and life pursuits helped establish the foundation for baking as an essential element for a healthy lifestyle.
Click on the images below to view .pdf files of the inductee’s biography and plaque.