Against a backdrop of economic uncertainty that features a volatile stock market, rising taxes and a stagnant job market, 10 remarkable business leaders have managed to not only survive, but to expand and succeed. They are the recipients of Smart Business Pittsburgh’s 2012 Pacesetter Awards.
This year’s Pacesetters have set new benchmarks by which economic achievements in our region are measured: the first and foremost is the net revenue recorded for business; the recruitment of new clients while retaining the loyal ones; the development of new markets, new products, new or enhanced services; the retention of employees at all levels; and the development and implementation of strategic growth plans.
These remarkable men and women, representing emerging, midmarket and centurion business categories, are profiled in this issue of Smart Business and were recognized at the 26th annual St. Barnabas CEO Leadership Conference on Sept. 17 in the Kean Theatre on St. Barnabas’ North Hills campus.
The theme of the 2012 Conference was Show Me the Money… The Big Business of Sports. Sports is big business locally, nationally and globally. Here in Pittsburgh and southwestern Pennsylvania, we are blessed with three major pro teams, nationally recognized college athletic programs as well as outstanding pro athletes in individual sports.
The economic impact of sports on our area was discussed and assessed by an outstanding roster of speakers: Ralph E. Cindrich, NFL sports agent/consultant; Frank Coonelly, president, Pittsburgh Pirates; Bob Ford, PGA Club professional and head pro of Oakmont Country Club; Mark Hart, director of planning and development, Pittsburgh Steelers; Suzie McConnell-Serio, Olympian and head coach, women’s basketball, Duquesne University; Steve Pederson, athletic director, University of Pittsburgh; and Matt Shaner, CEO/owner, Pittsburgh Power.
It’s interesting to note that, according to business writers and historians, the sports industry has performed better during a declining economy than in “normal” economic times. Fans turn to sports-related pursuits to distract them from the stress of economic doubt, according to “The Business of Sports” by Scott Rosner and Kenneth Shropshire.
St. Barnabas is proud to once again partner with Smart Business Pittsburgh. And our congratulations to all the pacesetters introduced in the pages of this magazine. This is, and always will be, a great country because of men and women like you.
William V. Day is president and CEO of St. Barnabas Health System.
The 2012 Winners: