As a bank executive, Herb Knoll was known as a man who could get the job done. But when the Western New York native lost his wife to pancreatic cancer in 2008, he found few resources that could help him recover from his grief. The more he learned about the plight of widowers, from high suicide rates to physical and emotional problems, the more he became motivated to write a book featuring the insights of fellow widowers for fellow widowers. After nine years of research, The Widower’s Journey was released in 2017 and continues to earn FIVE STAR reviews on Amazon.com.
Knoll is an experienced bank president, marketer, and professional speaker turned widower advocate. Knoll founded the Widowers Support Network in 2014, so he could better “serve, comfort, and assist widowers and those who love them.”
The Widowers Support Network currently supports thousands of widowed men from around the world. It was honored when it received “A Tribute” from the State of Florida House of Representatives in April 2021 during a general session of the legislative body.
Knoll also founded the Michelle’s Angels Foundation, Inc., in 2008, a not-for-profit whose mission is to “provide love, hope, compassion, and comforting music to those who quietly suffer.” A man of many interests, outside of banking, Knoll has served as a weekly columnist for the Rochester Democrat & Chronicle (A Gannett Newspaper), as contributing editor for Sales & Marketing Management magazine, and as a feature writer for Marketing Times magazine. In 1985, Knoll published his first book, The Total Executive. Following the book’s release, PBS affiliate WNED-TV produced Today’s Executive, a series of three half-hour television shows hosted by Knoll and featuring lessons from his book.
An inductee of the Buffalo/Niagara Sales & Marketing Executives, Inc. Hall of Fame, Knoll served as the Executive Director of the 10,000+ member Sales & Marketing Executives International. Knoll also served as a charter member of the board of directors for Nap Ford Community School in Orlando, Florida, and as a board member for various theatres, charities, and not-for-profits.
According to Knoll, his work as an advocate for widowers is what he is most proud of. His book, The Widowers Journey, inspired playwright Neil Radice to write and produce the play, “I’m Fine,” winner of the Emmanuel Fried Award for Outstanding New Play in upstate New York (2017).
Knoll’s insights are frequently featured when he is a guest on various international online outlets, websites, blogs, and podcasts, NationalWidowersOrganization.org, MennMore.com, OpentoHope.com, The Grief Toolbox, to name just a few.
Knoll’s production of the Widower’s Journey Podcast with Herb Knoll, which began programming in July 2019, is a smash hit, serving widowers in twenty-seven countries.
A former U.S. Army Drill Sergeant (E-7) (98th Division), Knoll is a proud Fourth Degree member of the Knights of Columbus. Knoll lives in Lake Mary, Florida, with his new wife, Maria C. Knoll, Ph.D.
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