Outdoor GreatRoom Company Founder Dan Shimek Passes

Outdoor GreatRoom Company founder and hearth industry veteran, Daniel C. Shimek, passed away October 11, 2013, in Apple Valley, MN, at the age of 65.

In 1975, Dan and Ron Shimek had an inspiration for indoor wood and gas fireplaces that became the foundation of Heat & Glo Fireplaces. The company started out small in a garage and became a $600 million business, according to the company.

In 1996, the company merged with Heatilator, a manufacturer of hearth products, to form Hearth & Home Technologies North America, with Dan Shimek as president of the company. Together, Dan and Ron had over 30 patents. In 2002, Shimek retired, but not long after started Fire Stone Home Products. Fire Stone originally started out as a business focused on grills and evolved into an outdoor living products company. The company changed its name in 2008 to the Outdoor GreatRoom Company and focused on providing gas fire pits, outdoor fireplaces, grills and furniture. In 2012, OGC began a division for indoor electric fireplaces called GreatCo.

Shimek recently celebrated the 10‐year anniversary of the Outdoor GreatRoom Company. “OGC will continue Dan’s vision of providing innovative, quality products while treating everyone with dignity and respect,” according to a company statement. “Shimek’s extraordinary vision and passion for the hearth industry will be a model for future entrepreneurs to come. His advancements and creativity in the hearth industry will not be forgotten.”