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Mini-cast 65: Help PA State Rep. Greg Rothman Help EO

Pennsylvania State Rep. Greg Rothman (R, 87th District) is emerging as a champion of employee ownership. If you could suggest legislation to support employee ownership, what would it be? In today’s episode, you’ll hear how you can help Rep. Rothman and PA lead the way in creating an EO-friendly environment.

As mentioned in this episode, you can hear more from Representative Rothman on EO in Episode 88 and Mini-cast 56. We encourage you to give your input and express your support for employee ownership directly to PA State Representative Greg Rothman and/or to; if you are in Pennsylvania you can also find your legislator's contact information here.


Mini-cast 65 Transcript

Announcer: 00:03 Welcome to The ESOP Mini-cast. A great way to wrap up the week.

Bret Keisling: 00:14 Hello, my friends. Thanks for listening. My name is Bret Keisling and as it says on my business cards, I'm a passionate advocate for employee ownership. This is the first new [mini-cast] episode of 2020 so let me start by wishing you a very happy new year. I hope your holidays were nice and I hope 2020 is a wonderful year for all of us. I'm recording this in central Pennsylvania, unexpectedly. I've been here a few weeks and will be a few more attending to some family matters regarding the health of my parents, but I've had the opportunity while I was here to have a number of conversations with a previous guest of our podcast and that's Representative Greg Rothman of the Pennsylvania state house of representatives. Representative Rothman first came to us on Episode 56 of the Mini-cast where he gave a shout out to D&H Distributing Company the opening of their new headquarters in central Pennsylvania and then returned on Episode 88 of The EO Podcast where he spoke at length about how he thought about employee ownership and a bi-partisan approach to employee ownership and what he thought he could do.

Bret Keisling: 01:20 In the last few weeks, as I said, I've managed quite by happenstance to have a number of conversations with Representative Rothman and, folks, as we say from time to time someone drinks the Kool-Aid, he has drank the Kool-Aid and is prepared to take very active steps about it. To that end, and I'm confident I'm not speaking out of turn, he hopes to introduce legislation that will support ESOPs and employee ownership. He's planning to undertake efforts to educate not just the public about the advantages of employee ownership, but also all of his colleagues in the state house of representatives and throughout Pennsylvania government. As you'll hear a if you tune into the previous episodes, Representative Rothman is looking at very much a bipartisan approach to employee ownership. He is -- he identifies himself-- as a capitalist and a Republican, but he understands that employee ownership is good, not just for his district, not just for Pennsylvania but for the United States as a whole and he has spoken about these on the episodes.

Bret Keisling: 02:21 So there are a couple of things I'd like you to do that would help Representative Rothman help employee ownership. He's sincere in his interest to introduce legislation that will support employee ownership. I know that he's been in contact with the Pennsylvania Center for Employee Ownership [PACEO] and its executive director, Kevin McPhillips, also a previous podcast guest, and certainly I've shared my thoughts of legislation that I think would be beneficial but, candidly, my thoughts come from an ESOP-centric perspective. So if you're an advocate or an employee owner in any of the states where there's great legislation going on and folks, there certainly are number of them: Vermont, Colorado lead the way. Illinois and California have done important work in the co-op/collectives communities, Massachusetts has enacted some supportive legislation and as previous guest Steve Storkan of the EOX has talked about state centers there is activity around the country. If you are aware of legislation that supports co-ops, collectives, or ESOPs, provide suggestions on what legislation you would like to see. Pennsylvania consider, you can do one of two ways. You can bring it to Representative Rothman's attention in the show notes to Episode 88 of The EO podcast. There's contact information for him and sincerely, if there's legislation he'd be interested to hear it. You're also welcome to bring it to my attention so that I can forward it along. But again, feel free to reach out to Representative Rothman directly.

Bret Keisling: 03:50 The other thing I'd like you to do, and I know it might be a tall task, we're very lucky with Representative Rothman because as he and I, and this is covered in the podcasts he appeared in, as we chatted, he instantly got the importance of bipartisan approach to employee ownership. So start thinking about who the elected officials are in your jurisdictions, either states or municipalities, et cetera, who can work across the aisle with each other to support employee ownership. My goal for 2020 is that we find tangible advances in legislation that supports employee ownership all across the country, that we focus more on state-by-state efforts collectively and hopefully have some uniformity. And I believe it's possible that with Representative Rothman's help and the assistance of his colleagues from across the political spectrum, that perhaps Pennsylvania could in relatively short order become the beacon around the country for ways that states can support employee ownership. And of course if Pennsylvania does it, that will then be a blueprint for the other states. So I hope you'll go back and listen to Episode 56 of the Mini-cast and Episode 88 of The EO Podcast. I hope you'll get to know a little bit more about Representative Rothman. I hope you'll assist him in bringing employee ownership to the forefront. And I hope you'll keep me in the loop. So with that, thank you so much for tuning in. We'll look for your next Tuesday on The EO Podcast. Have a great weekend!

Bitsy McCann: 05:22 We'd love to hear from you! To contact us, find us on Facebook at KEISOP, LLC and on Twitter @ESOPPodcast. To reach Bret, with one "T", email, on LinkedIn at Bret Keisling, and most actively on Twitter at @EO_Bret. Again, that's one "T". This podcast has been produced by The KEISOP Group, technical assistance provided by Third Circle, Inc. and BitsyPlus Design. Original music composed by Max Keisling, archival podcast material edited and produced by Brian Keisling, and I'm Bitsy McCann.

Standard Disclaimer: The views expressed herein are my own and don't represent those of my own firms or the organizations to which I belong. Nothing in the podcast should be construed as guidance or advice of any kind in any field. And the fact that I mentioned an organizational website or an advocate or a company on a podcast does not reflect an endorsement. But if you've heard your name or your group's name mentioned on this podcast, I'd love to have you come on and talk about it yourself.


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