Sheldon Lavin’s entry to OSI Group started in 1970 when he acted as a consultant in arranging for financing for the then Otto and Sons food company. By that time, he had come from a banking career and was running a consulting firm. He became a partner in 1975 when the company was looking into entering the overseas market. In the late 70s, Lavin joined OSI Group fully following a request by McDonalds and his appreciation of the company’s culture and strategies. In the early 80s, one partner decided to sell out his interests, which Lavin acquired, giving him half of the controlling stake. He took full controlling of the firm when the other partner retired more than 13 years ago.
Since taking full control, Sheldon Lavin has been working on expanding the business even further, a task he notes as the most exciting to him. He led its diversification to Asia and the European market while still growing the McDonalds business. OSI Group has continued to carry its entrepreneurial culture overseas and has grown to be the leader in protein supply across the globe. The once small company has grown to a global empire supporting other food chains in the world.
Sheldon Lavin has been active in philanthropy, supporting many charities in their initiatives, such as Ronald McDonald House Charities, where he acted as the chairman for capital raising campaign. He also supports the Inner City Foundation of Chicago, Evans Scholarship Fund, United Negro College Fund, Boys and Girls Clubs of Chicago, The National Multiple Sclerosis Society, and Jewish United Fund among others.
Lavin’s exemplary efforts were awarded a Global Visionary Award by India’s Vision World Academy on February 20, 2016. The award recognizes world visionaries from different industries who have demonstrated perseverance and persistence in their success. Lavin received the award for his ability to grow OSI Group to where it is today.