Stanley "Mickey" Zolot, 83, businessman

Stanley Zolot
Stanley Zolot
Posted: January 24, 2014

Stanley "Mickey" Zolot, 83, of Merion, a Philadelphia businessman and philanthropist, died Tuesday, Jan. 14, of cancer at his home.

Mr. Zolot owned Bilt-Well Furniture Co., a family business with design and decorator showrooms at 23d and Chestnut Streets. The firm was started by Mr. Zolot's father, Charles, and is now run by the third generation.

Born and raised in West Philadelphia, Mr. Zolot attended West Philadelphia High School, and then briefly Syracuse University and Pennsylvania State University. At age 18, when his father became ill, Mr. Zolot left college to run the business, which he built into a thriving enterprise. He was a respected mentor and employer.

Married in 1950, he and his wife, the former Janet Heicklen, raised a family in Merion and spent summers in Ventnor, N.J.

Mr. Zolot valued family above all, said his son-in-law, Ronald "Boots" Nissenbaum. "If you didn't like Mickey, you didn't like people. When you joined his family, you hit the jackpot," Nissenbaum said.

Mr. Zolot was known for his optimism and infectious laugh. He paid such close attention to sports that if given a team and a year, he could reel off the starting lineup, said his son Andrew.

Born into a musical family, he loved music and regularly attended Philadelphia Orchestra concerts.

An important component of Mr. Zolot's life was helping others. "Mickey was an extremely caring, generous man who helped individuals as well as countless charities," his wife said.

He supported Hadassah, Abramson Cancer Center, Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, Children's Hospital of Philadelphia, Abramson Center for Jewish Life, and many others. He was a member of Har Zion Temple and a strong backer of Israel, she said.

His daughter, Judy Nissenbaum, said: "His optimism, generosity, and presence were the foundation of our lives. He was the impetus for a family that was a model for all."

His son Kenneth said Mr. Zolot was sagacious: "I work at MIT, and I have never met a wiser man or a better teacher."

In addition to his wife, sons, and daughter, he is survived by five grandchildren and five great-grandsons.

Funeral services were Friday, Jan. 17.

Contributions may be made to Hadassah of Greater Philadelphia, 1518 Walnut St., Suite 402, Philadelphia 19102.



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