It was recently my great pleasure to meet with each of the three panelists of the upcoming ACG Portland Peer Growth Meeting, “Looking Back and Looking Forward: Reflecting on 20 Years of Northwest Middle Market Growth”.  

This event will be held next week at Portland’s Moda Center and honor the chapter’s founders, Cordell Berge  and Lee Koehn, as well as SpencerBrown — a longtime member and advocate for the chapter.

These are highly accomplished and respected businessmen in the Northwest who gave much of themselves to create a unique and thriving ACG chapter. Chapter President Casey Boggs, founder of LT Public Relations, seeking fresh ways to promote the event, undertook to create a brief video teaser of the honorees.  As a new chapter board member, I saw it as a great way for me to meet these guys and interact a bit over a piece of business.  

One of the ways ACG Portland is special among the international Association for Corporate Growth’s  many chapters is the high percentage of corporate leaders who attend its meetings and comprise its membership. The chapter aspires to have 75% of its membership be C-suite corporate executives of middle market companies and though somewhat short of that goal, the membership is dominated by that constituency. This is in stark contrast to most chapter memberships where investment bankers, commercial lenders, attorneys and other corporate service industry professionals eclipse corporate executive involvement.

It was a take-away for me to hear all three emphasize the importance of insuring the gathering of corporate CXOs to share ideas, problems and solutions across businesses and industries.  Most members would agree this guiding principle is at the heart of the thriving chapter’s success and recent report that ACG now has sixteen chapters actively managing membership to a desired representation validates the vision Portland’s founders showed pioneering this practice twenty years ago.