About the Center
The purpose of the Center for Family Business is to offer services and information to entrepreneurial families. Our aim is making and keeping family businesses successful.
Members of the program are family businesses, large and small, ranging from first to seventh generation, representing all sectors of the economy, from New Hampshire, Maine, Northern Massachusetts, and Vermont. The Center for Family Business is made possible by member support as well as that of our corporate sponsors.
New and exciting things are happening at the Center for Family Business! Our office recently moved into the new Peter T. Paul College of Business and Economics. This will allow us to establish a closer relationship with the faculty and staff of the business school and to provide even greater resources to our members. We have developed Facebook and Twitter accounts where we will share family business tips and keep people informed about upcoming programs, and we have started a members-only LinkedIn group, where CFB members can communicate easily, yet still in a private group.
A Brief History of the Center
The Center started in 1993 as the Penley Forum for Family-Owned Business. This forum was designed for family-owned and managed businesses with gross sales in excess of $5 million or more than 20 employees. The Forum was named for a 1932 UNH alumnus, Howard Penley, whose family owned the Penley Corporation in West Paris, Maine. Founded in 1928, the Penley Corporation manufactured wooden clothespins for over 80 years.
The Shapiro Forum for the Entrepreneurial Family was started in 1992 to provide a range of service to smaller family-owned businesses. The Shapiro Forum was founded by Irwin Muskat, then president of Jac Pac Foods in Manchester, in honor of his grandfather, Alex Shapiro, and uncle, Lester Shapiro, a 1938 UNH Alum. In 1930, Alex Shapiro began Jac Pac as a one-man business, peddling meat on the streets of Manchester. Over the years, the company spanned four generations of the Shapiro family and grew to more than 600 employees.
A separate but associated CEO Forum was initiated in 1997. The CEO Forum provides business leaders with an opportunity to meet with and learn from their peers in business and industry at quarterly breakfast meetings. Membership is limited to presidents, CEOs and business owners.
About the Center’s Director
Barbara Draper is the Director of Center for Family Business and CEO Forum. She holds a bachelor’s degree in Biology from the University of New Hampshire and is a graduate of the Whittemore School of Business and Economics Executive MBA program. She joined the center shortly after it’s inception in 1993 as associate director. She grew up in family businesses and has extensive experience working for and with family owned businesses. She created the Leadership Development Program and CEO Forum in response to requests from members to better serve their needs. She is a member of the Family Business Alliance, an international association of center for family business directors, and the New England Regional Directors.
For More Information
If you would like more information about the Center for Family Business and its programs, or if you know someone who is interested in joining, please contact the office at (603) 862-1107, or email: Barbara.Draper@unh.edu.