Herb Kohl, former senator and NBA owner, dies at 88

 December 28, 2023

Both the worlds of sports and politics lost a notable figure this week in Herb Kohl. 

According to Fox News, Kohl, former owner of the NBA's Milwaukee Bucks and a Wisconsin Democratic senator, died at 88. He's also the founder of Kohl's department stores.

The news was confirmed by his philanthropic organization, Herb Kohl Philanthropies. The company released a statement honoring its founder.

Other notable figures, such as Hillary Clinton, released statements regarding his death, especially as she worked with him during her time in the Senate.

Statement released

"More than anything, Herb loved Milwaukee and Wisconsin, and that is where he chose to live out his days," his organization said in a statement.

It added, "He touched an incalculable number of lives, and those who love him would remark that he is among the most decent people to ever walk the earth."

Tributes to the late senator and NBA owner streamed in across social media, and even out of the White House as President Joe Biden said words in the wake of his passing.

"Herb Kohl was one of the finest people I’ve served with – a kind and principled man of integrity and character, one of Wisconsin’s greatest-ever advocates, and a dear friend," Biden's statement read. 

Fox News noted:

Kohl got into politics in the 1970s when he served as the chair of the state Democratic Party from 1975 to 1977. He was the chair of the Special Committee on Aging and was the vice chairman on the Committee on the Judiciary. He won four elections during his career as a politician.

Governor's statement

Wisconsin Gov. Tony Evers also released a statement regarding Kohl's passing.

"Sen. Kohl was deeply committed to community, kindness, and service to others," Evers wrote. "Wisconsin’s seniors, students, teachers, and schools, and farmers and rural areas, among so many others, are better off because of his life and legacy, the impacts of which will last for generations."

Notably, Kohls never married. He believed that he could better focus on serving his state and running his team that way.

Tributes to Kohl continued to be posted across social media this week, from former colleagues to NBA players.

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