History of Mobern

Mobern was founded in early 1944.

A partnership was formed by Mr. Hyman Bernstein and Mr. Nathan Movitz. The name Mobern was derived from the use of "MO" from Movitz and "BERN" from Bernstein. However, the partnership did not last very long, as Mr. Movitz decided to pursue other interests.

At this time, Mr. Berstein's two sons joined the business and it became a family-run operation for more than 40 years.

Mobern was one of the very first fluorescent lighting manufacturers in the world. Fluorescent lighting was first introduced at the New York Worlds Fair in 1939 by General Electric. Less than five years later, Mobern was producing lighting fixtures for residential and commercial applications in the Washington DC and surrounding areas.

As a result of their hard work, the business became very successful and by the early 1950's, it became clear that the facility in Washington, D.C was no longer adequate for continued growth. They wanted to locate to an area that would allow them to better serve the Washington and Baltimore areas.

They found 14 acres of property on US Rt.1, just a mile north of Laurel, Md., which is the midpoint between Washington D.C. and Baltimore. At this time, US Rt.1 was and still is a main north and south truck route.

Construction of the new state of the art plant was started in 1956 and was completed and occupied in 1957.

Production was greatly increased with the use of modern conveyers and material handling equipment as opposed to single fixture bench assembly at the old facility. The DC facility continued to be a sales office until the early 1960's.

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By 1962, constrained by continuing growth, the new plant was in need of more room for production, so a storage room was added. By 1968, there was a need for more receiving, inventory and storage room so a second addition was constructed.

The additions served the needs of the operation well until 1975. A decision was made to fabricate their own metal and produce fixture bodies. A third addition was added, doubling the size of the other two. This section housed the metal division with its modern presses, roll-formers, machine shop, raw metal stock and finished goods metal inventory.

The metal shop has been a great asset for the growth of Mobern by producing a consistent quality product for customers throughout the eastern United States.

Business was good through the 1970s and 1980s. In 1987, both Mr. Berstein and his oldest son passed away within four months of each other.

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In 1988, the business was sold to a new owner. For 19 years, Mobern continued to produce quality lighting products.

In June of 2007, the business was acquired by a group of lighting industry veterans with a background in innovative and energy efficient lighting products. Their experience combined with Mobern's history and reputation in the lighting industry creates a recipe for success. The future of Mobern looked bright as they planned to bring innovative lighting products into the market.

A new era at Mobern has begun with its move in 2014 to a state-of-the-art factory/showroom located in Jessup, MD. The 80,000 square foot facility houses almost 10,000 square feet of modular lighting fixture and system displays designed to accomodate ever changing technologies as they emerge. The entire showroom can be controlled from a smartphone! Our warehouse can produce almost 2,500 fixtures per day and stock almost 10,000 fixtures for sale and distribution through 10 dock doors specifically dedicated for shipping/will call. Needless to say, we are extremely excited with the opportunities our new facility has to offer both to our local, next day market and nationally through our local representative network and stocking warehouses.

Mr. Robert C Murrill
Mobern employee for 66 years
December 31, 1929 - April 5, 2010
A cherished and respected man. He will truly be missed.