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Four generations of Mrs. B’s family join remodeled showroom celebration

Rose Blumkin, founder of Nebraska Furniture Mart, remembered as formidable trailblazer
Published: Mar. 17, 2021 at 1:35 PM CDT
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OMAHA, Neb. (WOWT) - Nebraska Gov. Pete Ricketts joined the family of Rose Blumkin on Wednesday morning for a ribbon-cutting ceremony at Mrs. B’s Clearance and Outlet store in Omaha.

The store isn’t new, of course, but it has a new look. The showroom was recently remodeled to make it easier for customers to navigate. The store also has a new “do-it-yourself” flooring department, a new accessory area, new paint, floors, displays, and graphics.

“When we began the remodel for Mrs. B’s clearance center, we wanted to carry on the legacy my great-grandmother started so many years ago,” said Becca Sudbeck, Mrs. B’s great-granddaughter.

Sudbeck was one of many family members who attended Wednesday’s ceremony. In fact, four generations showed up to celebrate, and to honor its founder and namesake.

“Mrs. B founded Nebraska Furniture Mart in 1937, when it was rare for a woman to be a business owner,” she said. “It’s fitting that we’re holding our grand opening ceremony during Women’s History Month which is a time to celebrate the accomplishments of women.”

And Mrs. B’s accomplishments were many.

Becca Sudbeck describes her great-grandmother as passionate, brilliant, hardworking, and fierce.

”I think Warren Buffett summed it up best when he said he’d rather wrestle grizzlies than compete with Mrs. B,” she said.

Ricketts highlighted Blumkin’s life, explaining how she came to the U.S. with virtually nothing and created the Nebraska Furniture Mart empire that much of her family still has a hand in to this day.

“Arguably, Mrs. B is the most successful and brilliant woman entrepreneur we’ve had in our country’s history,” the governor said. “This is a great accomplishment for the business and for the family. But it’s more than that, folks; this is a great American story.”

While Mrs. B’s Clearance and Outlet store is celebrating the new look and design, store director Scott Baker said some things will never change — and that’s how Mrs. B would want it.

“You will always find nice furniture and flooring at a great price, and you will find nice people to help you find things that you want and that you need. That’s the Mrs. B. way,” Baker said.

Mrs. B’s will continue to celebrate Women’s History Month by hosting a live panel discussion this weekend called “Empowered: Women Who Lead the Way.” Cammy Watkins, Deputy Director at Inclusive Communities will moderate the event. The panelists will be five Omaha female business leaders who have not only been successful in business but are also very active in the community.

Ticket options range from $5-40, and there is also a free option for students to view a livestream of the event. All ticket proceeds will benefit Girls Inc. of Omaha.

Registration for the event, set for 10 a.m. to noon Saturday, is open on Eventbrite.

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