Bob Holguin began learning how to service sewing machines on July 9, 1948. The company he worked for, Belvedere Sewing Machine Company in Los Angeles, used to paint and rebuild old treadle heads, put motors on, set them in portable cases, and sell them. In 1949, the company began to import the 15-class copy of the Singer machine from Japan and the 87 and 187 Adler zigzag from Germany. Bob was transferred to a new store in San Francisco so he could service the Necchi BU and BF from Italy. In 1950, the Korean War began and Bob was drafted into the Army. He served 18 months, and when he returned, the company began to go through different owners but always remained a sewing machine importing company.
In 1963, the Belvedere Company evolved into Riccar America. For about four years, Riccar sent Bob and two others to do demo and service seminars all over the country. They were some of the first to do seminars for Mr. Dick Beall and the VDTA. In 1973, Riccar sent Bob to the factory in Japan for one month where he enjoyed working in the research and development department. Bob has been involved in Riccar’s ongoing research and development and has played a large part in its success and reputation for quality products.
Through the years Bob has been recognized as one of the leading repairmen in the industry. His expertise has helped many dealers throughout the years. Looking back, Bob said, “Fifty years in business and I have never missed a paycheck. God has been good to me. Sewing machines have been good to me.”
1999 Vacuum & Sewing Hall of Fame Inductee