The National Capital Chapter of the Association for Corporate Growth (ACG National Capital) is celebrating a major milestone – three decades of serving business leaders in the nation’s capital. Today – thirty years after its founding – ACG National Capital remains the premier association for corporate executives in one of the country’s largest economies.
ACG National Capital has a long and storied history of driving middle-market growth and increasing deal flow. The chapter provides its members with unparalleled opportunities for networking, deal making and professional development. The chapter’s membership includes nearly 400 executives, all involved in building corporate value through M&A, strategic partnerships, organic growth and capital funding.
To celebrate this historic occasion, ACG National Capital is throwing a party. On February 13, 2018, members and their guests are invited to the Barns at Wolf Trap, where they’ll be able to enjoy refreshments, live music and the signature networking that has make ACG National Capital the cornerstone of the business and deal-making community in the national capital region.
However, before the festivities start, we sat down with some of our longest tenured members to discuss the chapter and its impact on the local business community. During our discussions, we asked them about how their membership has shaped their professional lives, the benefits of membership, and the changes they’ve witnessed in the region and its business community since the chapter started.
Our first interview subject was Beth Monroe, the CEO of JustinBradley, a staffing agency known for providing clients with exceptional financial, accounting and business talent. Here is what Beth had to say:
Corporate Growth, Capital Style (CGCS): Why did you first join ACG National Capital? Has your membership met those initial expectations? What other unexpected benefits have you derived from your membership?
Beth Monroe: I joined ACG National Chapter because I wanted to stay connected to the merger and acquisition community in the DC region. I had recently founded JustinBradley after my previous public company, where I was on the Board and involved with our acquisition efforts, was sold to a European conglomerate.
In the 15 years since joining ACG, my membership has exceeded expectations – I’ve made connections, built friendships, and have been inspired by the success stories of the “growth” community and their clients. Some of whom are now my clients too.
At the time, I joined ACG I was focused on jump starting JustinBradley, and did not expect to become immediately a “giver” to the organization – but it turned out that becoming active on the Program Committee – and ultimately on the ACG Board – was worth the investment. An unexpected benefit is the timely access to a network that would have otherwise taken years to build.
CGCS: What ACG events are of most interest to you? What events do you feel have the most value?
Beth Monroe: I’m a firm believer that you get out of an organization what you put into it – every event ACG hosts is an opportunity to seek out value.
The monthly breakfasts are great for relationships because there is a core group of regular attendees with which to build on the conversation from the previous month. I’ve also benefited from the sharing of best practices during the smaller company focused Roundtable events.
The annual Mid-Atlantic Growth Conference brings leaders and speakers from in and out of the region so you hear multiple perspectives on current and future growth. The “sold out” annual Awards Gala is an opportunity to greet and meet Washington’s most successful companies and leaders – one such introduction some years ago led to a major ongoing client relationship for JustinBradley.
CGCS: In your tenue with ACG, is there a single event or speaker that really stands out as being exceptional or particularly memorable? Which event, and why?
Beth Monroe: Some members find that golf or other ACG sponsored social gatherings stand out the most – I enjoy them as “icing on the cake”. It’s the monthly Breakfast that holds the most valued spot for me.
The CEO speakers are especially inspiring – and when the floor is opened for questions, our membership can search out that special something that makes this company and this CEO rise above the rest. And since we’re sitting at small group tables it’s an opportunity during breakfast to get to know your fellow members one on one.
CGCS: What are some of the biggest changes that you’ve identified in the National Capital business community since you joined ACG?
Beth Monroe: The National Capital business region and our chapter are ever transitioning – and one of the most notable changes for me since I joined ACG is the increasing number of women who have founded or excelled in the top ranks of some of the most successful companies in our region.
CGCS: What are some of the most memorable deals you’ve witnessed since you’ve joined the chapter?
Beth Monroe: Either the Discovery IPO, or the SAIC/Leidos/Lockheed Martin IS and GS spin-off and subsequent merger.
CGCS: What are the most interesting M&A and corporate growth trends that you’re seeing today, and what impact are they having on the region’s business community?
Beth Monroe: With the active merger and acquisition environment over the last five years, as a Search Consultant focusing on financial professionals, I have been close to the changing landscape for employees. With the low unemployment rate in Washington area, we see a continued trend to consolidate operations and locate shared services centers both in and out of our region.