FORT WORTH, TEXAS — J. Allen Baird, the former head of Mrs Baird’s Bakeries, Inc., Fort Worth, died Nov. 10 following a four-week bout with the coronavirus, according to the Fort Worth Star-Telegram.
Mr. Baird was chairman of the board from 1993 to 1997 and was president of the company for several years before that. When he retired, he stayed on as a senior consultant to the company, which was sold the following year to Grupo Bimbo SAB de CV. At the time of the transaction, Mrs Baird’s was the largest family-owned baking company in the United States.
Mrs Baird’s was established in 1908 when Ninnie Baird began baking in her home for the residents of Fort Worth using a four-loaf wood-fired oven. Seven years later, she had acquired a used 40-loaf oven and began distribution by bicycles and horse-drawn wagons driven by her sons. When Bimbo bought Mrs Baird’s, the company was the top seller of bread in Texas, operating 10 baking plants in 8 Texas cities run by 3,400 employees.
Survivors include his wife, Yvette; two sons, Michael and Lee; a grandson, Stephen; brothers Carroll and Arthur and a sister, Betty Baird. Another brother, H. Vernon Baird, who also was a former president and chairman of Mrs Baird’s, died in 1992.