14th Annual Family Business Forum
Join us virtually for our 14th Annual Family Business Forum on November 17th. Family businesses have a long history of knowing that when you are part of a community, you do what you can to support it. Keynote speaker Fred Keller will talk about what it means to be a leader not just in your business, but in your community as well. Through his initiatives, Fred has served the community in many different ways over the years and is ready to share his experiences with us.
We will have two additional micro-speakers going over how you can be a beacon of support in your community, no matter the size of your business.
Fred Keller, Cascade Engineering
Fred Keller is the founder and owner of Cascade Engineering. He serves as a director of Meijer, the chairman of the Economic Club of Grand Rapids, the chairman of the School to Career Progressions Board and the W.K. Kellogg Foundation. He is also on the advisory team for the Delta Strategy, a community-effectiveness organization. He and his wife support the Grand Rapids Symphony.
Family Business Philanthropy Story Tellers:
Brad Darooge, Baudville Brands
Passionate skier, mountain biker, and outdoor enthusiast, husband and father to 3 amazing children – when not focused on family and fun Brad has the best job in the world working to amplify the success of the Baudville Brands Team.
Brad has been leading Baudville Brands for 20 years. Under his leadership, the company has launched two new brands, and acquired a third and today operates four dynamic businesses out of their Grand Rapids, Michigan Headquarters. In 2020, Baudville was once again named one of the Best & Brightest Companies to Work For in West Michigan – winning for the 13th time in the 14 last years, and became GREAT PLACE TO WORK Certified! In addition to leading Baudville Brands, Brad is involved in leadership with the Young Presidents’ Organization, the American Catalog Mailers Association, and Baudvilles’ Helping Hand Charitable Foundation.
Christopher Fennema, Kent Companies
Chris is part of the third generation ownership at Kent Companies, having started his career in the family business while in his teens. Throughout high school, college, and grad school he remained on staff and gained an understanding and appreciation for the values that drive the mission statement at Kent Companies: “Invest in our people, our customers, and our communities.” In his current role, he oversees talent development and asset management and is the point person for the company’s efforts to engage with local non-profits. His ongoing commitments to the community include participating in three trade schools’ advisory boards, his role as a board member of the Michigan chapter of the American Subcontractors Association, leading FBA’s Event Planning Committee, and assisting Streams of Hope Food Pantry in planning for their upcoming expansion.