Woodard & Curran was founded as an employee-owned firm. We continually seek ways to sustain this private ownership model for the benefit of our employees. Recently, our program expanded to provide more employees the chance to become owners. The pride that comes with that ownership is something we want more employees to experience. But private ownership is about more than just pride; it is about controlling our own future.
Choosing Principles over Profit
Woodard & Curran employees are our stockholders, which means we can put people and principles before profit. We set our own long-term priorities, rather than letting the short-term stock price dictate our decisions. Our values define who we are as a firm, and private ownership enables us to live our values. At Woodard & Curran, putting our people first is one of our five values and it is critical in providing value to our clients. In fact, as I say often “Our Values Drive Our Value.” Through the many difficult economic times our nation has experienced since 1979, Woodard & Curran has been able to uphold our values and, as a result, we continue to steadily grow.
How our ownership program has grown
The opportunity to purchase shares is offered to employees who demonstrate consistent and exemplary performance, and who uphold our values in their actions. Employees have the opportunity, depending on their contributions to the firm, to move up through ownership levels as their careers progress.1
We believe private ownership is essential to our success, as is fostering the next generation of owners. During our strategic planning process five years ago, we set a goal to expand to one-third employee ownership. Through more frequent and expanded communications about why private ownership matters, and the creation of new approaches like an initial stock match grant, we surpassed that goal in 2020. Since our 2015 goal was set, we saw an increase in both the total number of stockholders and the percent of ownership, rising from 179 to 364 stockholders and from 25.8 percent to 34.4 percent of employee ownership today.
1Woodard & Curran, Inc.’s Stock Ownership Program is administered consistent with the plan documents; descriptions of the program provided herein are for general and informational purposes only.