Monthly Message – May 2014 - Conway Center for Family Business

Monthly Message – May 2014


Monthly Message – May 2014

Family Dynamics:

An Inside Look at Parent/ Next Gen Relationships in Family Businesses

Program presented by:


May 15 – 7:30-9:00 a.m.

Ohio Dominican University – Community Room in Alumni Hall

1216 Sunbury Road, Columbus, OH 43219

One of the most interesting (and sometimes challenging) issues family businesses face is the question of how to invite and integrate children into a family business. The cliche about the issues of every family business being unique is amplified by the difference in the kinds of business challenges that each business enterprise faces in working to be successful.

In our May meeting we will talk about opportunities and pitfalls in bringing children into a family business. Three family business owners will talk about their approach to creating a path to successful integration: Chris Converse, of Converse Electric, will discuss what he and his dad and sister learned through the company’s leadership transition; Mark DeBellis, owner of Suburban Steel Supply, will talk about his efforts to get his son ready for leadership through mentoring; and Steve Ulrey, President of Flyers Pizza, will lay out steps he and his brothers are taking to get their children ready for a role in the highly competitive pizza business. Thaddeus O’Brien, of O’Brien & Associates, will set the stage for the discussion and moderate the panel.

RSVP to Heather Howell at or 614-253-4820. The program is free for Conway Center members and $35 for non-members. Family business leaders attending for the first time may attend as our guest.

Directors’ Insight

With nine educational programs, four roundtables and seven peer groups taking place each year, there is always a lot going on at the Conway Center that can benefit not just family business owners but their non-family employees too! Did you know that your Conway Center membership allows you to send employees (both family and non-family members) to our educational programs and most peer groups? It’s a great way for your employees to learn from family business leaders and expert speakers and facilitators and bring back information that will benefit your family business. They’ll also get to meet other family business representatives and build relationships. What a great way to maximize your Conway Center membership and provide training perks to your employees!

So, if you have an employee who would benefit from attending some of our programs, please invite him/her to a meeting and send Heather ( his or her email address so we can add them to our distribution list and they learn about upcoming programs, peer groups, and events first-hand and become involved with the Center. We hope you will take advantage of this membership benefit so we can work with more members of your team soon!

Dick and Deana

Summer FUN Trifecta!

Family Business Night at the Clippers!

Wednesday, June 18 – 7:05 p.m.

Huntington Park

The 6th Annual Family Business Night at the Columbus Clippers is coming up soon! Root for your home team as the Clippers take on the Buffalo Bisons, while you enjoy an evening with your family, employees, clients, and others who are passionate about family business. We’ve purchased a block of tickets in Sections 2 and 3 and hope you can join us. Reserved seats are $10 per ticket (adult and youth).

The tickets are going fast, so be sure to reserve yours by emailing your desired ticket quantity to Deana Gordon at or calling the office at 614-253-4820.

Golf Outing!

Limited Number of Teams — Sign up today!

Tuesday, July 22 – 10:00 a.m.-5:00 p.m.

Little Turtle Golf Club

Join us at Little Turtle Golf Club for a fun day of golf and family business fun and games! Your day on the course will include a golf scramble, fun competitions, and lunch, followed by drinks, appetizers, and a very special auction. You don’t want to miss this opportunity to connect with family business leaders and support the Conway Center!

Tickets are $125 per person, $500 per foursome and include golf, cart, box lunch, appetizers, and 2 drink tickets. There are also sponsorship opportunities available. Founder level is $1000 and includes: one foursome, one hole sponsorship, your logo on the banner at registration, recognition in the program, and a mention in the announcements. The Next Generation Level is $500 and includes: two players’ fees, one hole sponsorship, recognition in the program, and a mention in the announcements. Hole Sponsorships are also available for $200.

To register, become a sponsor, or request more information, please contact Deana Gordon at or 614-253-4820.

Family Business Tour and Networking Event

Thursday, August 14 – 4:00-6:30 p.m.

Spartan Logistics

Logistics are hot right now and we’re going to give you a behind-the-scenes look at a key player in this industry during the 11th Annual Family Business Tour and Networking Event. Spartan Logistics works with manufacturers to provide outsourced warehousing operations and specializes in food, beverage and packaging distribution. Mark your calendar now for this always fun event!

Advisory Board Resources

Several members have told us that they would like to find advisory board members for their family businesses. If you would like more information about starting an advisory board, are interested in serving on an advisory board, or want to meet those who are, please contact Executive Coordinator Jill Hofmans at or 614-253-4820.

Conway Center Peer Groups

To sign up for any of our peer group meetings or to learn more about peer group opportunities contact Executive Coordinator, Jill Hofmans, at or visit for a full schedule of Peer Group programs.

Next Generation Leaders Peer Group
May 13, 2014
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
O’Brien & Associates
47 W. 3rd Street, Columbus, 43201

Women in Family Business Peer Group
May 20, 2014
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Griffin Student Center, Room 274
Ohio Dominican University
1216 Sunbury Road, Columbus, 43219
Topic: What Should You Include in a Buy-Sell Agreement?

Business Development Peer Group
May 22, 2014
7:30 a.m – 9:00 a.m.
Griffin Student Center, Room 274
Ohio Dominican University
1216 Sunbury Road, Columbus, 43219
Topic: Understanding the Web: Creating an Online Environment that Converts to Leads

Online Strategy Peer Group
June 4, 2014 (last session until September)
8:00 a.m. – 9:30 a.m.
1465 Northwest Blvd, Columbus, 43212
Topic: Q&A Day! Bring your laptop and any/all questions you have. This session is all about YOU. Fathom experts will walk you through trouble spots, assess your needs, and provide hands-on assistance unique to your company’s internet presence.

Next Generation Leaders Peer Group
June 10, 2014
12:00 p.m. – 1:00 p.m.
O’Brien & Associates
47 W. 3rd Street, Columbus, 43201

Succession Planning Peer Group
June 12, 2014 (last session until September)
7:30 a.m. – 9:00 a.m.
Griffin Student Center, Room 274
Ohio Dominican University
1216 Sunbury Road, Columbus, 43219
Topic: Developing Future Scenarios including Sale

Looking for a click-of-the-mouse, super easy way to support the Conway Center? has a program called AmazonSmile. You simply designate The Conway Center for Family Business as your charity of choice and make all of your typical purchases through their AmazonSmile website. The AmazonSmile Foundation will donate 0.5% of the purchase price to the Conway Center from your eligible AmazonSmile purchases. Easy!

Here’s how: Go to from the web browser on your computer or mobile device. You may also want to add a bookmark to AmazonSmile to make it even easier to return and start your shopping at AmazonSmile. Here is the FAQ for AmazonSmile:

Thanks for your support!

Welcome New Members

F&W Properties
David and Suzanne Fisher, Nate Fisher, Clare Brofford, James Fisher, Katherine Fisher
753 East Broad Street, Columbus, OH 43205

F & W Properties was started by David and Suzanne Fisher in 1969. Nate Fisher, CPM, David and Suzanne’s son, now oversees day-to-day operations and Clare Brofford is a realtor and the Broker of Record for the company. F & W Properties takes pride in providing safe and affordable housing to its residents, who occupy 890 rental units in the Central Ohio area. In 2013, F & W Properties partnered with Buckeye Real Estate on three new apartment development projects on the North Campus of Ohio State University. They also have a 50% ownership interest in 105 units in Austin, TX. F & W is an active member of the Columbus Apartment Association (CAA), with David serving as trustee and a former chairperson of the Crime Prevention Committee. Nate is the President elect of the CAA and serves on the Board of Trustees and Public Policy Committee. F & W was recognized by the National Apartment Association in an article about their “Get Tough” policy against illegal activity among their residents, and continues to work hard with their communities to encourage residents to join in their efforts to ensure a safe living environment. F & W has also been involved in multiple “turn-around” projects that help turn non-functioning properties into long term viable assets.

The Jerry McClain Companies
Gerald McClain, Beverly Donaldson, Roger McClain, Cindi Haney
28 E. Locust Street, Newark, OH 43035

The Jerry McClain Company began as a construction company, but started building assisted living facilities in 1986 under the leadership of Jerry’s daughter, Beverly Donaldson. Since then, the Newark-based company has built 23 facilities in Ohio. Some have been sold, but nine are still operated by the McClain family. The Jerry McClain Companies helped to pioneer new rules and regulations that are still used for licensing and operating assisted living communities. In 1987, the Jerry McClain Companies built the first free-standing assisted living facility in Ohio – the Inn at Sharonbrooke. Similar facilities were developed in other parts of Ohio based on the Sharonbrooke model. In 2007, Jerry’s son, Roger McClain, became more involved in the construction, designing a new “lodge-like” style of building that attracted many residents. The Jerry McClain Companies continue to develop facilities for themselves and others that desire a “turnkey”service, which includes the model building, furnishings and supplies, and fully-licensed operation and procedure manuals for each new facility. The Jerry McClain Companies recently started their 22nd project in Dover, OH and plan to open in summer 2014.

Primary Aim, LLC
Ben Thompson, Tim Thompson, Steve Thompson
947 Adair Avenue, Zanesville, OH 43701

Primary Aim, LLC owns and operates 31 Wendy’s restaurants in the Ohio Valley and West Virginia with over 1,000 employees. The company is owned by brothers Ben, Steve, and Tim Thompson – all from Zanesville, Ohio. Ben serves as President, Tim as Chief Operating Officer, and Steve as Chief Financial Officer. Primary Aim began operations in 1999 with the purchase of a single Wendy’s franchise in Barnesville, Ohio. The company then expanded its business in 2003 with the acquisition of the Cadiz, Ohio Wendy’s. In 2008, Primary Aim gained 27 stores previously owned by the Wendy’s Management Group, Incorporated.

Service Provider News

Conway Center Service Provider Joel Guth (formerly of Morgan Stanley) has founded Gryphon Financial Partners. He and his team are the latest to join the HighTower Network, an industry-leading financial services firm which supports independent financial advisors with a wide array of services from technology, to compliance, to operations. Principal Joel Guth has extensive experience working with successful family business owners, specializing in pre-liquidity planning, deal execution, and post-deal wealth management. Joining him at Gryphon Financial Partners are co-principal Cathy Cory as well as team members Angelo Manzo, CFA, Judy Roseberry, CRPC, Maria Kardassilaris, Jeannie Sturges and Kathy Payne. Gryphon Financial Partners oversees $600 million in assets for approximately 100 families. Gryphon Financial Services is located at 325 John H. McConnell Boulevard, Suite 425, Columbus, OH 43215, 614.929.2880.

Member Events

Webinar: Tax Strategies for Establishing Profitable U.S. Operations

Conway Center Service Provider Plante Moran is hosting a free one hour webinar at 2 p.m. on May 13 to review key strategies manufacturers can employ to minimize tax obligations associated with their U.S. operations. For U.S. manufacturers and global manufacturers investing in the U.S. market, the current tax environment offers valuable credits and incentives at both the federal and state levels. What credits and incentives should manufacturers consider? This session will identify the tax implications of the reshoring trend in U.S. manufacturing; distinguish how recent changes to the regulations for R&D expenditures may expand tax benefits; identify how international companies can appropriately structure their investments in the United States; and indicate how to pursue state tax incentives available, including job credits, abatements for new machinery and equipment, grants for new facilities, and more. To register, click here.

Webinar: Pension Plan De-risking & Terminated Vested Buyouts Webinar

Conway Center Service Provider Findley Davies is presenting a free half-hour webinar at 10 a.m. on May 28 for defined benefit plan sponsors with financial, board, or human resources responsibilities related to pension plans. Pension plan sponsors continuously monitor risk exposure and make informed decisions about risk tolerances each year. This very fluid process includes evaluating: terminated vested payouts; how to administer terminated vested buyouts; active, vested and retiree funded status trigger points; annuity purchase options; and advantages of partial settlements. Click here for more information and to register.

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