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ESOP Association Leadership


James Bonham


James Bonham

President & CEO, The ESOP Association

From The ESOP Association’s national headquarters in Washington, DC, James Bonham serves as President and CEO, leading The Association and its 19 state and regional chapters throughout the nation. Bonham also serves as President of the Employee Ownership Foundation, whose mission is to educate and expand employee ownership throughout the United States.

Bonham is a recognized expert in public policy, government advocacy, and executive leadership. He brings more than 25 years of experience as a high level government official, advisor, and business leader with expertise in the fields of taxes, labor, financial services, manufacturing, healthcare, and government contracting.

Before joining The Association, Bonham was Chairman for nearly eight years of the highly regarded Public Policy and Government Relations practice at Manatt, Phelps, & Phillips, LLP, a nationally recognized law and business consulting firm. In this role, Bonham led teams of lawyers, policy experts, and advocates representing clients as diverse as New York Life, The Recording Academy (Grammy’s), StarKist, and the American Land Title Association.

During a decade of public service, Bonham held multiple senior staff positions, including Chief of Staff in the U.S. House of Representatives and the U.S. Senate, where he was frequently cited in the media as one of the 50 most influential aides of either political party.

His passion for shared capitalism springs from a family commitment to employee ownership: His grandfather had a personal and professional relationship with James Cash (J.C.) Penney, based partly on a shared business philosophy. One of their beliefs was granting a form of ownership to employees in the small mercantile businesses they ran. Bonham is proud to carry on today his family tradition of expanding employee ownership.

Karen Ellis_TEA Chair

Karen L. Ellis

Chair, The ESOP Association Board of Directors

EVP, Human Resources
Superior Farms/Transhumance Holding Company Inc.

Karen Ellis is the Executive Vice President of Human Resources at Superior Farms/Transhumance Holding Co., which is a100% employee-owned company since 1991 with its corporate office located in Sacramento, CA.  Ellis also serves as a member of the Board of Directors and began her career at Superior Farms in1996. 

Ellis has served on TEA’s Board for many years, most recently as Vice-Chair of the Association for the past two years and Secretary-Treasurer prior to that.  Ellis has also served on the EC of the SRCC and as Chapter President of the California and Western States chapter.  She also serves as a Trustee to the Employee Ownership Foundation and a member of the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees.


Karen Ellis


Executive VP of HR
Superior Farms, Transhumance Holding Company

Derrick Vick

Vice Chair

Freedom Industries, Inc.

Steve Earle


Vice President of Kitchen Operations
Mid South Building Supply Inc. 

Ali Jamshidi

Immediate Past Chair

VP of Finance & CFO
CTL Engineering, Inc.

Cara Benningfield

Chair, Advisory Committees


David Fitz-Gerald

Chair of the Employee Ownership Foundation

Vice President and CFO
Carris Reels, Inc.

Peter A. Ney

Chair, Public Policy Council

Executive Vice President, Treasurer and Director
EA Engineering, Science, and Technology, Inc., PBC

Lori Stuart

At-Large Professional Representative

Senior Consultant
Blue Ridge ESOP Associates

Becky Streff

State & Regional Chapter Council Chair

Vice President of People Operations
Holden Industries, Inc.

Connie Burnette

Corporate At-Large Member

Vice President, Dept. Mgr. Human Resources

Executive Committee of the Public Policy Council

Peter A. Ney

Chair, Public Policy Council

Executive Vice President, Treasurer and Director
EA Engineering, Science, and Technology, Inc., PBC

Brian Bowers

ESOP Rep. (Up to 250 Employees)


Bowers & Kubota

Ben Holder

ESOP Rep. (More Than 250 Employees)

President and CEO

Plastic Products, Inc.

Barbara Clough

TEA Chapter Advocacy Officer Rep.

Senior Manager

Blue Ridge ESOP Associates

Renee Lewis

ESOP Professional Rep.


Holland & Knight

Gary Shorman

PPC At Large Membership Rep.


Eagle Communications

Sean-Tamba Matthew

At-Large Membership Rep.


Stevens & Lee/SES ESOP Strategies

Allison Wilkerson

At-Large Membership Rep.


McDermott, Will & Emory

Executive Committee of the State and Regional Chapter Council

Becky Streff

State & Regional Council Chair

Vice President of People Operations

Holden Industries, Inc.

Steve Earle

Immediate Past Chair

VP of Kitchen Operations

Mid South Building Supply

Michelle Steltz

Financial Controller

Opportunities for Positive Growth, Inc.

Emilie Poulakos

Human Resources Manager

OwnersEdge Inc.

Amy Huot

Manager, Product Intelligence and Process Support


Derrick Vick

Freedom Industries Inc.

Frank Cinatl

Executive Vice President

Abatix Corp

Dan Marcue

Vice President for Chapters and Educational Programs

The ESOP Association

Chairs of The ESOP Association Advisory Committees

Renee Stadtmueller

Chair, Advisory Committee on Admin

Blue Ridge ESOP Associates

Rebecca Glasgow

Chair, Advisory Committee on Finance

UBS Financial Services

Peter Jones

Chair, Advisory Committee on Legislative & Regulatory

Tucker Ellis, LLP

Mike Frommelt

Chair, Advisory Committee on Ownership Culture

KeyStone Executive Search

Andy Manchir

Chair, Advisory Committee on Valuation

Katz, Sapper & Miller

Wayne Isaacks

Chair, Advisory Committee on Fiduciary Issues

Isaacks & Associates, Ltd