SOUTHAMPTON, Pa.--(BUSINESS WIRE)--The Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership (PCEO), designed to promote a better understanding of employee ownership, today announced the appointment of Kevin McPhillips as founding Executive Director.
“After a comprehensive strategic search, it was clear that Kevin was the perfect fit for the needs of the PCEO,” said Ken Baker, CEO of NewAge Industries and Chairman of the PCEO. “His broad background and leadership skills are exactly what we need to help us meet our objectives, raise awareness through education, create more employee owned companies and ensure the PCEO plays a vital role in a fundamental change in the United States economy.”
As baby boomers reach retirement age, more than $1 trillion is expected to change hands from this generation of business owners to the next. This is the biggest business succession period this country has ever seen, and the PCEO will make sure these business owners have the right information they need to make intelligent decisions. By providing a market-based solution to the income inequality debate currently playing out across the country, employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs) and broad-based employee ownership appeal to prominent leaders in both political parties.
“It is a great privilege to be able to lead the efforts of the PCEO,” said, McPhillips. “I’m eagerly looking forward to working with the extraordinary team of volunteers to continue educating business leaders, employees, business associations, policy-makers and other key stakeholders about the importance of employee ownership for Pennsylvania. Employee ownership provides individuals with a strong mechanism to build better businesses, conduct more meaningful work and develop a greater sense of community to give back to where they live. The message that I have heard so clearly from all of those involved in the founding of the PCEO, is one of a selfless and enthusiastic desire to change lives in a real, positive and substantial way in Pennsylvania. To be part of that is a gift,” he added.
McPhillips’ professional experience spans more than 30 years and features a mix of both non-profit leadership and executive management within a wide range of corporate entities. Prior to joining the PCEO, McPhillips served as CEO and led the efforts of 1000 Museums, the leading community destination to discover, shop and share museums and exhibitions from around the world. Before that, he was President and COO of The Princeton Companies, a full-service eCommerce and Integrated Marketing firm, where his efforts guided the company from $2 million to $21 million in four years. It was here that he was handpicked by the Governor's Office as a model of NJ Business growth.
McPhillips got his private sector start with Acxiom Corporation as a trainee but quickly rose through the ranks to become Vice President of Operations in four years, leading the Philadelphia operations group of 800 associates. He then joined Direct Group, one of the nation’s leading providers of direct marketing services. As President and COO, McPhillips helped take the $2 million startup to $125 million.
Studies show employee-owners tend to be more engaged and committed to providing superior products and services. Just as important, employee ownership keeps businesses and jobs in Pennsylvania and builds community wealth. Employees at employee-owned companies are more productive, were four times less likely to be laid off during the great recession and have retirement accounts that are 2.5 times greater than employees at comparable companies, resulting in more members of the community with secure financial futures.
"Employee ownership, when done right, makes companies and communities stronger,” said Loren Rodgers, Executive Director of the National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO). “The biggest reason that more companies do not become employee owned is that their current owners do not realize all the potential benefits to them and to their employees, and the Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership is perfectly positioned to address this gap. I'm delighted that Kevin has stepped up to help business leaders in Pennsylvania learn from their peers about the role of employee ownership. "
There are nearly 300 employee-owned companies in Pennsylvania employing more than 300,000 people. While employee-owned companies range in size, some of the most well-known companies in the Commonwealth are employee owned, including Wawa, Crown Cork and Seal, Bradford White, Dansko, and Sheetz.
The PCEO is an affiliate of the NCEO, a 501(c)(3) public benefit corporation, supported by volunteers from among Pennsylvania ESOP companies, service providers and agencies, educational institutions and other interested parties.
About the Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership
The Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership is a 501(c)(3) public benefit corporation, supported by volunteers from among Pennsylvania ESOP companies, service providers and agencies, educational institutions and other interested parties. The PCEO promotes better understanding of the values of employee ownership among business leaders, public officials, employees, members of the media, students, teachers, nonprofit leaders, consumers, and other persons and organizations in Pennsylvania. For more information, please visit http://www.ownershippennsylvania.org.
Editor's Note: For headshot images of Kevin McPhillips, please contact Kevin Jurrens, kjurrens@BroadpathPR.com.