Roger Muller Jr. and Erica Muller, grandchildren of John Muller gather with family and friends in front of the 106 years old Muller Insurance business after the street naming for “John Muller Way.”
By Sally Deering
(Hoboken, NJ) On May 17th, Hoboken Mayor Dawn Zimmer, the first woman to be voted in office as mayor of the Mile Square City took time out of her busy schedule to pay tribute to another pioneer, John Muller, who opened Muller Insurance in Hoboken in 1906 and whose family has carried on his legacy into the 21st Century.
Mayor Zimmer, along with Hoboken City Council President Elizabeth Mason, City Councilmen Peter Cunningham and Ravinder S. Bhalla and Hudson County Freeholder Anthony Romano assembled on the corner of Tenth & Washington Streets now known as “John Muller Way” with friends, colleagues, business associates and neighbors of the Muller family who were there to see the street name dedication.
“We’re thrilled to be here and welcome all of you as we honor the Muller family,” Mayor Zimmer told the crowd as buses rumbled past and passersby walked their dogs. “Muller Insurance has been here since 1906. John Muller came here from Germany in 1903. I can only imagine what his life was like at that time. We can’t thank (the Muller family) enough for your commitment to this community and we want to wish you another 105 years.”
Mayor Zimmer bestowed a Proclamation to John Muller’s grandchildren Roger J. Muller, Jr. and Erika Muller, who run the company with their semi-retired father R. John Muller and mother Hetty J. Muller. Although his parents couldn’t attend the ceremony because of bad weather, Roger J. Muller’s two daughters, Kelsey and Taylor were there for the celebration.
“In honor of my grandfather, I would like to thank the city of Hoboken for renaming Tenth & Washington after him,” Roger J. Muller, Jr. said. “And my father, R. John Muller, who took over the business and ran it with my mother Hetty J, I’m very proud of them, too. My parents are the best people in the world”
Councilman Peter Cunningham, who brought the resolution to rename the corner of Tenth & Washington Streets “John Muller Way” before the Hoboken City Council – which unanimously voted “yes” – said a few words as did Hudson County Freeholder Anthony Romano who was responsible for bringing the resolution for the name change to the Board of Freeholders who also voted a unanimous “yes.” (Since Washington Street is a County Road, the resolution needed to be approved by the Hudson County Board of Freeholders, too.)
Freeholder Romano has been a long-time friend of Roger J. Muller and his sister Erika Muller and shared the same sentiments of the city council members: that by honoring a business pioneer like John Muller, Hoboken also honors its great history.
“We need to celebrate the heritage of Hoboken and retain that for the future of our city,” Hoboken City Council President Mason said. “Muller Insurance has served the community for such a long time. To celebrate something positive, like this, is something we need to do more of.”
Business colleagues of Muller Insurance were also there to celebrate the Muller Insurance milestone including Steve J. Catranis, Senior Vice President of Marketing for the Cumberland Insurance Group which has been associated with Muller Insurance for 26 years. “Roger’s father and mother are great people, great associates,” Catranis said. “I’m glad to be here for a wonderful family. And Roger is one of our best agents.”
After the street dedication and Proclamation, friends, neighbors and associates were invited back for refreshments at the Muller Insurance office, filled with modern technology – several LCD TV screens displaying insurance information and advertising – and the friendly staff who were still conducting business in between the celebration. The walls in the office are lined with awards and old photos of the family’s budding business in the early 1900s. Blended together with up-to-date color photographs, they are testament to the family’s long Hoboken history and its continuity of services to the people of Hoboken that has lasted 105 years.
One neighbor who came to celebrate was Rose Pasquale who with her husband Vinny Pasquale has been securing insurance with the Mullers since 1964.
“They helped my family,” Pasquale said. “Mr. (R. John) Muller was a very good friend. They are such wonderful, wonderful people.”
Muller Insurance is an insurance agency that for three generations has served and protected the people of Hoboken with homeowners insurance, business insurance, automobile insurance, fire insurance and many other services. In this time of economic uncertainty – as well as in times gone by — Muller Insurance, a Trusted Choice Agency continues to uphold the high standards put forth in 1906 when a young John Muller first opened the doors to the insurance agency that bore his name on the storefront’s windows.
In the 46 years John Muller owned and operated Muller Insurance, he proved to be more than an insurance agent to the people of Hoboken. Time and again, John Muller demonstrated a deep commitment to Hoboken through hard work and community involvement in the city’s public affairs.
During his long career, John Muller was a staunch Democrat, belonged to the First Ward Democratic Club and also ran his own Democratic Club at Fifth and Bloomfield Streets. He was elected Justice of the Peace for Hudson County in 1916 and also served as President of the Hoboken School Board. He was a member of the Hoboken Aerie, No. 603, of the Fraternal Order of Eagles; the Columbia Lodge, No. 63, of the Independent Order of Odd Fellows and the Euclid Lodge, No. 136, of the Masonic order. He was a member of the Hoboken Elks Lodge No. 74, the Hoboken Masons Euclid Lodge and the Lions Club. John Muller not only handled insurance policies he brokered real estate, acted as a Theatrical Agent for Broadway shows, was a New Jersey Notary Public, business broker and served as a NJ State Detective.
When John Muller died in 1952, his son R. John Muller took over the agency, put the letter “R” in front of his father’s name on the storefront window and rolled up his sleeves to bring Muller Insurance to even greater success. And today, with their dad semi-retired, Roger J. Muller, Jr. and Erika Muller have followed in their father and grandfather’s footsteps. Roger and Erika have brought Muller Insurance into the 21st Century with new technologies, like the company’s website www.mullerinsurance.com, and a staff of hand-picked professionals who are members of the Professional Insurance Agents and Independent Insurance Agents Association and who provide the very best in customer service, which was the foundation of their father and grandfather’s business philosophy and work ethic.
As an independent insurance agency, Muller Insurance offers a full range of property and casualty insurance, both personal and commercial, and represents a number of quality insurance companies including Franklin Mutual, Farmers, Chubb, Great Northern, Merrimack, Baystate, Cumberland Insurance Group, Federal, Andover Companies, Magna Carta, Fidelity National, Selective Flood, Preserver, Tower, Foremost, Progressive, Mercury, Germantown, Travelers Insurance Company and Philadelphia Contributionship.
Muller Insurance offers special package rates – up to 30% discounts available with Chubb and Travelers Insurance, for instance, which offer a multi-policy discount with a combination of Home-Auto, Condo-Auto and Renters-Auto insurance. You can also put your Home, Auto, Umbrella, Boat, Rental and Out-of-State policies on one policy. Muller Insurance gives its customers proper coverage and rates for homeowner, condominium, and business policies and provides services to people in Hoboken and New Jersey and is licensed in New Jersey, New York, Pennsylvania, Connecticut, North Carolina, South Carolina, Florida, Maryland, Washington D.C., New Mexico, Arizona, Vermont, Ohio, Delaware, Maine, Georgia, Virginia and New Hampshire.
930 Washington Street
Hoboken, NJ 07030