"This morning's conference was great!  It was a wide range of participants on the panels and that was a great way to hear a wide view of options and ideas from the panelists!  Kevin Hancock gets my vote for most open, honest and helpful answers to questions. He was outstanding and his thoughts today were very heartfelt and honest.  Take away the layers of "facade" and discuss the truth of what it's like and how you face the issuers."
- Janet Cole Cross, Career Coach, Cole Cross Connections, LLC

Family Business Forum - 5 G's CEO Panel

  • October 01, 2020
  • 8:30 AM - 10:00 AM
  • Free Zoom Webinar


  • Free!
  • Free!


Family Business Forum: "Learn from the Best:  Challenges and Successes of the 5 G's (Generations)"

FREE Zoom Webinar! - Link will be given closer to event.

Join the Institute for Family-Owned Business for our Family Business Forum created to help family businesses navigate through successful succession planning and the ups and downs of the economy.

Family-owned businesses make up over eighty percent of Maine’s businesses.  In any five-year period nearly 40% of family businesses will pass the baton to the next generation and, when that occurs, statistics are alarming: only 30% survive to the second generation, 13% to the third generation, and 3% to the fourth. 

We’ve gathered a panel of experts who have successfully navigated this transition of the “5Gs” - family businesses that have beaten the odds and successfully passed the business to the third generation and beyond. Not all companies used a common recipe for their success. They all took different paths to become who they are today.  Sometimes the best way to keep the family business, was to pass the baton to a non-family member.  We’ll hear from both family and non family members on their thoughts on succession, leadership and how they plan to manage well into the future.


Lindsay Skilling - CEO, Gifford’s Ice Cream - 5th generation
Lindsay Skilling is a fifth-generation ice cream maker and CEO of Gifford’s Famous Ice Cream. With a staff of 45 year-round employees and sales of 2.2 million gallons of ice cream a year, Lindsay’s role includes oversight of operations, staff, five seasonal ice cream stands, and a thriving ice cream factory, which produces more than 100 flavors and distributes to hundreds of large and small retail locations from Maine to South Carolina. Lindsay received a business degree from Bryant University. She is the board chair of the IFOB and serves on the board for Educate Maine. In her spare time, she enjoys biking, hiking and snowmobiling with her husband and two young children.

Greg Sweetser, President of Sweetser’s Apple Barrel and Orchards - 5th generation
Greg Sweetser is the 5th generation owner of Sweetser’s Apple Barrel and Orchards, in Cumberland Center ME.  From childhood, Greg was immersed in orchard operations and the retail sales these skills led Greg into a career off the farm managing Saddleback Ski Area and then as director the Ski Maine Association which brought him back to the farm. 

The transition of the farm ownership from his parents, Dick and Connie took place over a 15 year period. Greg just retired from Ski Maine and devotes his full attention to the family business. 

 Tony Shurman – President and CEO, Jasper Wyman & Son - 4th generation
Tony Shurman is President & CEO of Jasper Wyman & Son (“Wyman’s”), one of the largest brands in the retail frozen fruit category in the U.S., with its most notable product being wild blueberries.  Founded in 1874, Wyman’s is a family-owned business headquartered in Down East Maine with an ongoing commitment to environmental stewardship, corporate social responsibility and innovation. In addition to its branded offerings, the company sells into the food service channel and as an ingredient for use in other foods such as muffins, jams, and yogurts globally.

Prior to joining Wyman’s in 2017, Tony ran the Post Foods cereal business which includes brands such as Honey Bunches of Oats, Grape Nuts, Pebbles, and Post Shredded Wheat.  Earlier in his career he worked in brand management roles in the gum and mints category as well as in consumer healthcare.  He has experience working across geographies including Japan, Europe, and the U.S. Tony lives with his wife, two sons, and two dogs in Yarmouth, Maine. 

Jo-An Lantz – CEO, Geiger - 5th generation
Jo-an Lantz, MAS President/CEO of Geiger. She was named Advertising Specialty Institute (ASI) 2020 Person of the Year, a member of the Promotional Products Association International (PPAI) Hall of Fame, and former Chair of the Board.  She was ranked #5 in 2019 ASI Power 50 most influential people in the promotional products industry.

Paul Wainman - President & CFO,
 Hancock Lumber - 7th generation
Paul is President and CFO of Hancock Lumber a seventh-generation, family-owned business whose mission is to create a workplace environment that enhances the lives of the people who work at the organization. Established in 1848, Hancock Lumber manages over 12,000 of their own timberlands, operates three eastern white pine sawmills, truss and wall panel manufacturing facilities, and a network of lumberyards and kitchen design showrooms across Maine and New Hampshire.

Paul joined Hancock Lumber in February 2016 as CFO and became President and CFO on January 1st, 2020.  Born and raised in the UK, Paul started his career with the accounting firm KPMG.  After qualifying as a Chartered Accountant in England he began a career in the printing and greeting card industry that brought him the US in 1995—and, ultimately, to Maine in 2005 as President of William Arthur, a Kennebunk-based, fine stationery subsidiary of Hallmark Cards.  Paul has served on the boards of both the United Way of York County and the Education Foundation of the Kennebunk’s and Arundel, and is currently a member of the Board and Audit Chair of ImmuCell, a small cap animal health public company in Portland, Maine.  Paul lives with his wife Helen and their two children, Oliver and Annabelle, in Kennebunkport, Maine.

Moderator: Steve Tenney, Founding Partner & CEO, Great Diamond Partners
As CEO and Founding Partner of Great Diamond Partners, Steven Tenney strategically leads the firm, supports all of its members and directs the investment strategy. He believes the gold standard of wealth management is found at the intersection of empathy and technology, and helps the firm evolve to that level, to meet the needs of today’s clients and those of the next generation. Previously, Steve worked at UBS Financial Services for 26 years, most recently as Senior Vice President and Senior Portfolio Manager. In 1997, Steve merged his wealth management practice with his father’s. This first-hand experience in a family business gives Steve empathy for the families he consults with as they face financial and emotional challenges.  Outside of work he spends time volunteering and competing in numerous sports including sailing, swimming, trail running and rowing.

Attendees will have the chance to share their experiences and ask questions of the panel.       
For more information contact: catherine@fambusiness.org 

The Zoom link will be sent a few days before the event on October 1st. This will be a live Zoom webinar that will be recorded and sent out after, along with a survey.

Thank you to our Sponsors:

Panel Sponsors:

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