W. ROCKWELL "ROCKY" WIRTZ
Rocky was just 2 years old when his grandfather, Arthur Wirtz, purchased the Chicago Blackhawks in 1954. Rocky grew up within the walls of the storied Chicago Stadium, and in 2010 and 2013 he oversaw the team’s historic Stanley Cup championship victories.
As President of Wirtz Corporation, Rocky’s role extends to a vast array of businesses, from beverage distribution to financial services, insurance and real estate.
Wirtz Beverage Group is a leading national distributor of the world’s top luxury and premium wine, spirits and beer brands. The company, headquartered in Chicago, has operations in Illinois, Iowa, Minnesota, Missouri, Nevada and Wisconsin.
Rocky has found business synergies among Wirtz Corporation’s many holdings. In 2011, Wirtz Beverage Illinois opened a 605,000 square-foot, multi-use training and distribution center just outside of Chicago, which includes corporate offices and the largest temperature-controlled wine storage facility in the country. In 2013, the company broke ground on a complementary facility in Lexington, Ill., set to open in 2014. The developer behind both projects: Wirtz Realty. In addition to development, Wirtz Realty owns and manages several commercial and residential properties along Chicago’s lakefront and throughout the suburbs.
Rocky also oversees Wirtz Insurance as well as banking interests at First Security Trust and Savings, based in Elmwood Park, Ill., and First National Bank of South Miami in Florida. Those companies have long been recognized for their solid financial footing and the strong roles they play in supporting local communities and charities.
Additionally, Rocky serves as Co-Chairman of the Executive Committee of Chicago’s United Center and is a member of the National Hockey League’s Executive Committee. In the six years since Rocky has taken on these many leadership roles, he has earned national recognition for the many successes each company has achieved.
Through it all, Rocky continues to lead his family’s commitment to numerous civic and charitable organizations. His dedication to Chicago Blackhawks Charities is unwavering. Founded by his father, Chicago Blackhawks Charities has donated millions of dollars to dozens of organizations focusing on youth programs, health and wellness, education and housing. Those philanthropic efforts have earned the group numerous civic awards, with Chicago Blackhawks Charities having been named a “Superstar of Service” by the Jefferson Awards for Public Service and a “Champion for Children” by Children’s Memorial Hospital.
Rocky is a member of the elite Civic Committee of the Commercial Club of Chicago and serves as a Trustee at The Field Museum and Northwestern University, where he earned a Bachelor of Science degree in communications in 1975.
At Northwestern, he established the Virginia Wadsworth Wirtz Endowment for Visiting Artists. That endowment program, named in honor of his grandmother, allows Northwestern’s School of Communication to invite nationally acclaimed performers to work directly with students and staff at the Theatre and Interpretation Center.
Rocky and his wife, Marilyn, reside in the northern suburbs of Chicago with their two beagles, Bernie and Queenie. Rocky has three children, Daniel, Hillary and Kendall; Marilyn has one daughter, Elizabeth. Rocky is also the proud grandfather of Rosemary and Juniper.