About Earl G. Reubel


Earl’s great journey through life started in Harlem, where he became the first black salesman allowed to sell in the homes of white New Yorkers. It was at Kirby that he learned the skills of the trade that he further developed to make himself and his family a success. Earl spent 10 years in the United States Army flying helicopters, including his time of service during the Vietnam War. He used his piloting and entrepreneurial skills to create a search and rescue business in Washington State. And, in 1984, Earl and his nephew, Joe Reubel, created Verdan Healthcare which became the platform for Kerma Medical Products, Inc., founded by Earl and his wife, Joyce Kershaw Reubel, in 1991. Through the years, Kerma has established itself in the healthcare industry as a company that manufactures, assembles, and packages medical products and is now one of the largest diversity manufacturer/supplier companies in the healthcare private sector.

Owens & Minor has established this award to honor the late  Earl G. Reubel, whose vision of building a legacy for his family through Kerma Medical Products, Inc., showed the true spirit of his entrepreneurial nature.

Over the years, Kerma Medical has become our most strategic and longest tenured Diversity Supplier and is a key part of our diversity supplier offering to our hospital customers.  The close association between our two companies is one that Owens & Minor values greatly.

Earl G. Reubel was a once in a lifetime, analytical, insightful, caring, intuitive, and natural born businessman.  His business instincts were unprecedented.  Earl will truly be missed by the healthcare industry, and all who knew him.

The Earl G. Reubel Award will honor a woman or minority entrepreneur in healthcare who embodies the qualities that made Earl G. Reubel so special and such a force in the healthcare industry.