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    Cornell Family Business Conference

    Family. Thought. Leadership.

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    “Why Family Business? Family enterprises are the major drivers of the global economy. They span the economic spectrum from start-up through the largest and often oldest businesses in the world. For any entrepreneurial venture to move beyond conception, family invariably plays a critical role; whether to help vet new ideas, to take care of the books, to be the first round of official hires or seed funding. For any family business to move beyond the founding generation, they must bake entrepreneurship into their corporate DNA.”courtesy of Smith Family Business Initiative 

    Daniel Van Der Vliet, executive director of Cornell Family Business, welcomed students, owners, academics, and practitioners to the 2019 Annual Families in Business Conference.

    Our very own president, Kelly Clements, was invited to be a speaker at this year’s conference. AWESOME.


    “I had the privilege of attending and speaking at the 2019 Family Business Conference through Cornell University’s Smith Family Business Initiative. The formal description of the initiative is: “The Smith Family Business Initiative at Cornell is dedicated to supporting and strengthening the network of owners, leaders, and alumni that work in, with, or for a family business.” And that is precisely what this conference was about. In attendance was an inspiring network of family businesses coming together to talk through the joys and difficulties that are unique to family businesses. To be surrounded by 3rd, 4th, 5th, 6th generation businesses re-energized my passion for Gordon’s Window Decor (not that the passion ever really flags!). We covered topics ranging from concrete succession planning advice to the role of mindfulness in leadership. Any opportunity to reflect on your daily work out of and away from your daily work is special. This opportunity was made even more special because of the depth and breadth of experience in the room. I am so looking forward to next year! “

    Kelly’s talk was so moving, @CornellFamBiz posted this on Instagram!

    All of us here at GWD know how much of a gem our Kelly is, and it’s SO FANTASTIC to know the world is catching on.

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