NEW YORK — Jack "Chip" Rieger, a pioneer in the wholesale and licensing arena instrumental in making the Izod Lacoste brand among the first fashion status symbols, died March 12 at Saint Luke’s-Roosevelt Hospital Center. Rieger, who was 83, died from complications of a massive stroke he suffered about 2 1/2 years ago.

Born in Brooklyn and a captain in the Air Force during World War II, the outgoing Rieger spent most of his 40-year career with David Crystal, once a large manufacturer that owned Izod Lacoste. Rieger was president of Izod and, under his stewardship, the brand grew enormously. Rieger joined David Crystal in 1949, when the business had $25 million in sales, and left in 1979 when volume was $350 million and the firm was sold to General Mills.

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