The second annual Wolcott J. Humphrey III Symposium on Leadership and Community Life will feature Paychex Chief Executive Officer B. Thomas Golisano as keynote speaker, Symposium Chair Martin Culik announced today. Mr. Golisano's subject will be "Turning Vision into Reality." The Symposium is scheduled for Wednesday, September 22, 2004 at Genesee Community College's Batavia Campus.
The Symposium was founded by friends and family members of Wolcott J. Humphrey III, who died in 2001. Each year the Symposium features an address on the subject of leadership by one or more noteworthy practitioners of the art of leadership.
The Symposium will kick off on September 22 at 4:00 p.m. with a panel discussion on business vision featuring local business and civic leaders. A buffet dinner follows at 5:30 p.m. Mr. Golisano's keynote address begins at 7:00. Mr. Golisano plans to explain how he turned his own business vision of 35 years ago - a payroll processing service for small business - into a dynamic $1.3 billion company serving more than 500,000 business clients.
The fee for the event, which includes dinner, is $25. Advance reservations may be made by calling the College's External Affairs Office at (585) 345-6809.
The seeds of the Wolcott J. Humphrey III Symposium were planted during Mr. Humphrey's life. As president of the former Pavilion State Bank and an active member of numerous civic organizations, Mr. Humphrey frequently spoke about the need for a forum where community and business leaders could hear and learn the world's best ideas about leadership. After his untimely death in 2001, associates of Mr. Humphrey decided to make his dream a reality and establish a leadership symposium in his memory at Genesee Community College. The first symposium was held in 2003, and featured Syracuse University Basketball Coach Jim Boeheim who spoke about leadership and perseverance.
This year's Wolcott J. Humphrey Symposium features a speaker whose leadership was responsible for the growth of one of the nation's fastest-growing companies. B. Thomas Golisano founded Paychex in 1971 at the age of 30, and throughout the last three decades, Paychex and Mr. Golisano have been cited by the national media as the source of remarkable innovation in payroll, human resource, and benefits management.
In January 2004, Forbes Magazine named Paychex as one of the 26 best managed companies in America. One month later, Fortune Magazine named Paychex as one of the "most admired" companies in the nation. Training Magazine in May 2004 ranked Paychex among the Top 100 training organizations in the nation for a third consecutive year. Also in May, for the third straight year, Forbes ranked Mr. Golisano as one of the "top ten" bosses in the U. S. Last year, The Wall Street Journal rated Paychex among the 25 best performers over a 10-year period based on total shareholder return. Mr. Golisano and Paychex have received hundreds of other top rankings and mentions in recent years.
Besides his business accomplishments, Mr. Golisano has been recognized for his civic involvement, philanthropy, and service to others. He was recognized in March 2004 by the Association of Fundraising Professionals as the world's outstanding philanthropist of the year, having provided significant contributions to educational and service organizations in recent years. He has received honorary doctoral degrees from several colleges. He has received numerous awards from local, regional, and national business and civic organizations for his achievements. He was instrumental in preserving the health of the Buffalo Sabres when he purchased the national hockey league team last year. He is well known throughout New York State as a founding member of the Independence Party and as a candidate for governor in 1994, 1998, and 2002.
Mr. Golisano has a strong personal interest in the reduction of substance abuse and teen pregnancy, and has been an active volunteer in the Rochester-based Prevention Partners, a coalition designed to combat illegal drugs and alcohol abuse. He is the founder of the B. Thomas Golisano Foundation, which awards grants to organizations that provide opportunities for people with disabilities and their families.
Mr. Golisano is a native of Irondequoit, New York, and is a graduate of the State University of New York at Alfred.
The story of Mr. Golisano is one of achievement and involvement, said Mr. Culik, Symposium Chair. "Tom Golisano's story is one that every business and community leader, and every aspiring leader should hear," Mr. Culik said. "The growth of Paychex was not an accident. He built this company through a combination of strong vision, sound business insight and planning, determination, and the very best business practices anyone could follow in the business climate of the last three decades. If every CEO and manager in this region can put something of Tom Golisano's philosophy and technique into practice, I believe significant business growth can follow."
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Please note: A photograph of B. Thomas Golisano, Chief Executive Officer of Paychex, Inc. is available at the following internet address: