Exiting with Grace: Symposium Exploring Employee Stock Ownership Plans

The Family Business Initiative will host an entrepreneurship and family business symposium focused on employee stock ownership plans (ESOPs).

Date: Wednesday, November 1, 2023
Time: 8 a.m. - 1 p.m.
Location: Country Club of Rochester (2935 East Ave, Rochester, NY)

The program, “Exiting with Grace,” will run from 8 a.m. to 1 p.m. on Wednesday, Nov. 1, at The Country Club of Rochester (2935 East Ave, Rochester, NY). Designed for entrepreneurs and family business owners/stakeholders, the symposium features insightful talks and panels with business owners from Rochester-based marketing agency Butler/Till and convenience store and gas station chain Stewart’s Shops three-generation family firm. Legal and financial experts will also explore the unique advantages of ESOPs.

At the symposium, Dr. Carol Wittmeyer, director of Fisher’s Family Business Initiative and a visiting associate professor in the School of Business, will be joined by featured speakers including Tracy Till, former co-CEO and chairman, Butler/Till; Melissa Palmer, former CFO, Butler/Till and adjunct professor at Fisher; Gary Dake, president, Stewart’s Shops; Patrick Suprenant, vice president of fuels/trustee, Stewart’s Shops; Rob Brown, Esq., founding partner, ESOP Plus®; Terry Griswold, ASA, senior managing director, Empire Valuation Consultants; Dr. Hugh Lambert, assistant professor of accounting; and Dr. Chantz Miles ’22 (Ed.D.), entrepreneur-in-residence in the School of Business.

During the symposium, attendees will learn about the exit planning landscape and how owners need to prepare for an exit by addressing control, legacy, feelings, and paternalistic tendencies/price. Next, a panel of owners will share stories on how they transitioned their firms to ESOP ownership. A third session will include expert commentary on how to build a team to support the consideration and implementation of an ESOP strategy. The symposium will conclude with an expert networking luncheon where presenters will lead table discussions and answer questions from attendees.

“Exiting with Grace” is sponsored by ESOP Plus® and Empire Valuation Consultants. Interested attendees may register online now through Tuesday, Oct. 24 (also the last day for refund requests). For more information, email cwittmeyer@sjf.edu.

Organized by:

Hosted by the Family Business Initiative