3 min reading time
Story 075 – 1929 – People

Far-sighted humanist in the executive chair

Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller led Wieland into the 21st century

Karl Eychmüller's son was responsible for Wieland for more than half a century, 27 years of which as Chairman of the Executive Board and nine years as Chairman of the Supervisory Board. He modernised and internationalised the company, but always saw it as his "working home".

Wolfgang Eychmüller was born in Ulm in 1929. After graduating from high school, he studied at the Technical University of Stuttgart and received his doctorate as "Dr. Ing. Actually, he had other career plans, but then followed the wishes of his father Karl Eychmüller and joined Wieland in 1957. Three years later he became a member of the board of directors, which he took over as chairman as his father's successor in 1972.

His courageous decisions included above all the modernisation of all production facilities and Wieland's international presence - first in Europe, then in the USA and Asia. Against some reservations, he was able to implement the necessary financial feats in his far-sighted, clear and authentic manner. In his harmony between words and deeds, his balance between closeness and distance and his broad knowledge of art, culture and science, he was characterized as a "role model, a person of respect, truly pioneering".

As a friend of classical music, he was involved in the International Bach Academy Stuttgart, and as a passionate technician he supported the establishment and expansion of the University of Ulm. For decades, he – a professed Christian – was active in the Ulmer Münsterbauverein which was dedicated to the preservation of the minster and whose chairman he was for 30 years. He generously supported the cultural and sporting life in Ulm and Vöhringen, and both cities granted him honorary citizenships.

Bearer of the Medal of Merit of the State of Baden-Württemberg and the Bavarian Order of Merit, he is still remembered by many employees for his profound connection to the company: Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller saw Wieland not simply as an employer but as a "working home". He was often on site at the plants, personally received those celebrating their anniversaries, and above all appreciated people for their personality and ethical values. Because he always personally lived out his ideas of a "working home" over the many decades of his work, he has left a lasting mark on Wieland's corporate culture to this day.

In 2008 he resigned as Chairman of the Supervisory Board, but remained Honorary Chairman until his death in 2013. At his funeral service in the Ulm Cathedral, which he held in such high esteem, more than 900 guests from business, politics, science and culture paid their last respects to him.

Speech of Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller at Voehringen Christmas party 1988

A picture with symbolic character: Also at the Voehringen Christmas party in 1988, Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller focused on his ideas of a humanistic coexistence.

Newspaper article funeral service Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller

The press reported in detail on the funeral service for Dr. Wolfgang Eychmüller in September 2013. Numerous speakers paid tribute to him as an outstanding personality in Ulm Cathedral.