The Record reports: Henry Taub, the businessman and philanthropist who started the payroll processing giant ADP as a 21-year-old accountant working above a Paterson ice cream parlor, died Thursday. He was 83.
Taub, of Tenafly, lived the American dream, growing up in Paterson as the son of immigrant parents. His father worked in a textile mill and as a junk dealer, driving a horse and wagon through the Paterson streets as late as the 1960s. Taub was educated in Paterson public schools and studied accounting at New York University.
Taub was part of a group of New Jersey businessmen known as the Secaucus Seven, who owned the New Jersey Nets basketball franchise for almost 20 years. They relinquished majority ownership in 1998 to a group led by Ray Chambers and Lewis Katz.
In 1949, one of Taub’s accounting clients was late paying workers after the payroll manager became sick. That gave Taub the idea to handle company payrolls, and he started Automatic Payrolls Inc. In the early days, Taub didn’t own a car, so he delivered payrolls by taking the city bus.
A young Paterson insurance salesman, Frank Lautenberg, joined the company a few years later, using his salesmanship to sell large corporations on the concept.
Lautenberg, the longtime Democratic U.S. senator, recalled his old friend as a “brilliant” and hard-working businessman Friday.
“We worked a lot of seven-day weeks, but Henry never let [his brother] Joe or me leave the place without cleaning up and preparing for the next day,” Lautenberg recalled. “He was very disciplined.”
ADP grew – in part through acquiring other companies – as the American economy expanded in the second half of the 20th century. The company went public in 1961. Now based in Roseland, it has 47,000 employees, 550,000 clients in 125 countries and annual sales of almost $9 billion.
Taub was a prominent philanthropist, starting the Teaneck-based Henry and Marilyn Taub Foundation more than 40 years ago. The foundation, which has assets of about $150 million, donates to educational and health causes, including organizations in Paterson.
“He never forgot where he came from,” said Barbara Lawrence, the foundation’s executive director.
Lautenberg agreed, calling Taub “a proud son of Paterson,” a city that Lautenberg said had offered “refuge” to their immigrant families.