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Is an ESOP Right for You? An In-Depth Look at Employee Stock Ownership Plans

February 7–8, 2018 :: Scottsdale, AZ

About This Meeting

Enhance your company's legacy and benefits plan with an ESOP- the most tax-efficient method of exit planning. You will learn: Valuation and Financing, Legal Issues and Plan Design, Issues for Selling Shareholders and Communication and Ownership Culture.


February 7, 2018
1:00 PM
Welcome and Introduction
Loren Rodgers, NCEO
1:30 PM
An ESOP Company Perspective
2:00 PM
ESOP Transaction Structures
Mark Welker, Husch Blackwell LLP
2:45 PM
3:00 PM
Assessing ESOP Feasibility
Steven M. Etkind, Sadis & Goldberg LLP
3:45 PM
Table Talks: Roundtable Discussion Groups
4:15 PM
Plan Design and Operation
Bryan Golden, Private Capital Corporation
5:00 PM
Adjourn: Join your co-attendees and presenters for wine and cheese and get those last-minute questions answered
February 8, 2018
9:00 AM
Welcome and Recap
Loren Rodgers, NCEO
9:15 AM
Determining Stock Value
Chuck Coyne, Empire Valuations Consultants, LLC
10:00 AM
Financing an ESOP
Kenneth E. Serwinski, Prairie Capital Advisors, Inc.
10:45 AM
11:00 AM
Fiduciary Issues
Merri E. Ash, First Bankers Trust Services
11:45 AM
Lunch with the Experts
12:45 PM
Incentive Compensation for ESOP Companies
Jamie Zveitel Kwiatek, Polsinelli
1:30 PM
Alternatives to an ESOP
Greg Fresh, Chartwell
2:15 PM
2:30 PM
Investing the 1042 Rollover
Doug Pugliese, Alpha Architect
3:15 PM
Ownership Communications and Culture, Recent Research
Loren Rodgers, NCEO
4:00 PM


Merri E. Ash

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First Bankers Trust Services

Merri has more than 43 years experience in employee benefits services. Her past work experience includes work as a senior trust officer with SunTrust Bank, employee benefits consultant with Wyatt Company, benefits manager with Jonathon Corporation, an ESOP company and team leader and Senior Benefits Consultant with the National Automobile Dealers Association. She is a member of the NCEO, a past chairperson for the administrative advisory committee of The ESOP Association, current board of governors member for the National ESOP Association and current board of trustees member for the Employee Ownership Foundation. Merri has been with First Bankers since 2002.

Chuck Coyne

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Empire Valuation Consultants, LLC

For more than 25 years, Chuck has provided business valuations of privately held companies in various industries. He has prepared valuations for estate and gift tax, ESOPs, family business succession, bankruptcy and reorganizations, fairness opinions, family limited partnerships and limited liability companies, marital dissolution, shareholder and partnership disputes, allocation of purchase price among acquired assets (SFAS 141), goodwill impairment testing (SFAS 142), and mergers, acquisitions, and divestitures. Chuck provides ESOP feasibility studies and assists clients with transaction structuring.

Steven M. Etkind

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Sadis & Goldberg LLP

Steven oversees the Sadis & Goldberg LLP's tax, trusts and estates, ERISA, and employee stock ownership (ESOP) groups. He is also a certified public accountant. Steven has created hundreds of estate plans, ranging from a few million dollars in size to those in the hundreds of millions of dollars. He has represented trust companies or business owners in numerous ESOP transactions, and advised many businesses and private investment partnerships on taxation, corporate transactions, business succession issues and employee incentive strategies.

Greg F. Fresh

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Greg leads Chartwell's corporate finance practice. He has an extensive background in M&A and corporate finance. During his more than 25-year career, he has been involved in sell-side, buy-side, and capital markets transactions in a variety of settings, both as an advisor and as a principal investor. Prior to Chartwell, Greg was a managing director at Bank of America Merrill Lynch and ABN AMRO. Greg is a nationally known speaker on ESOPs, and an active member of the ESOP Association, the NCEO, and ESCA.

Bryan J. Golden

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Private Capital Corporation

Bryan is managing director of Private Capital Corporation, specializing in Comprehensive Perpetuation PlanningTM, helping clients plan for liquidity, broadened ownership, and tax-favored succession plans. He has extensive corporate management experience, founded a manufacturing company, and was a founder of an early, large ESOP company. He holds a BS in engineering from Seattle University and an MS in systems management from USC. He is a frequent speaker at NCEO and ESOP Association events.

Jamie Zveitel Kwiatek

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Jamie is a shareholder with Polsinelli. Jamie helps employers who maintain ESOPs and other benefit and executive compensation plans navigate the quagmire of laws and regulations governing employee benefits and executive compensation. With more than 30 years of experience, she assists companies in the development and maintenance of creative employee benefit plans and executive compensation arrangements. She is also an advocate for clients when regulatory compliance issues arise. Jamie understands how important a productive workforce is to a client's business.

S. Doug Pugliese

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Alpha Architect

S. Douglas Pugliese is director of portfolio services at Alpha Architect, where he leads the firm's 1042 ESOP solutions practice. Doug and his team provide innovative and affordable passive equity index roll-overs for clients seeking to diversify and monetize their business holdings. Previously, Doug was director, wealth transition strategies, at SEI Private Wealth Management, a multifamily office, where he focused on advising business owners. Prior to joining SEI, Doug was employed by Marshall & Stevens, Inc., a financial consultancy, where he was an executive managing director and Principal, managing activities in the Northeast region, including the firm's New York and Philadelphia offices. Doug received his B.A. in economics and Spanish Literature (with honors) from the University of Pennsylvania and his MBA in finance from the Stern School of Business at New York University, where he was a Dean's Scholar and a Stern Scholar. Alpha Architect is a quantitative asset management firm focused on delivering sophisticated tax-efficient active exposures at affordable costs.

Loren Rodgers

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National Center for Employee Ownership

Loren joined the NCEO in 2005 and became its executive director in 2010. He writes extensively on employee ownership in professional and academic publications and has spoken at events around the world. Since he entered the field in 1995 as a consultant, he has worked with hundreds of companies. His expertise includes ESOPs, equity compensation, best practices for employee ownership companies, research, effective communications, employee motivation, corporate governance, ESOP transactions and operations, and business literacy.

Kenneth E. Serwinski

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Prairie Capital Advisors, Inc.

Kenneth co-founded Prairie Capital Advisors, Inc. in 1996 after recognizing a universally underserved need for objective financial advisory consultation for closely held businesses. Kenneth has dedicated his vast experience to providing closely held companies with the guidance and expertise needed for some of their most critical business decisions. He continues to grow Prairie Capital Advisors' reputation as the most widely respected firm of its kind, designing and implementing customized ownership transition strategies, including private sales, management buyouts, ESOPs, and more for businesses nationwide.

Mark Welker

presenter photo

Husch Blackwell

Mark leads the firm's tax, benefits and compensation group and its succession planning team. Mark is also a CPA, although he practices only law. He focuses on creation and operation of ESOPs, and deferred and equity compensation. Mark quarterbacked his first ESOP transaction in 1986 and has worked on hundreds of ESOP matters. In recent years, he has closed ESOP transactions valued in excess of $2 billion. He has also designed and implemented creative incentive solutions for many dozens of companies.

Meeting Site

The meeting will be held at the Embassy Suites Scottsdale (formerly Chaparral Suites), located at 5001 North Scottsdale Road. Sleeping rooms are available for our group at a special rate of $229. The reservation cutoff date has been extended. Please call 800-362-2779 to make a reservations by January 23, 2018. Please mention the National Center for Employee Ownership when making your reservation.


All meeting registrations must be prepaid.
To register, click the add-to-cart button below corresponding to (1) whether you are a member or not and, in the case of members, whether you are a company member or service provider and (2) how many people are attending (for example, if you are registering two people, you will have a quantity 1 in your shopping cart for a two-person registration). You will enter attendee names in the box at the bottom of the first checkout screen. If you are registering four or more people, contact Colleen Kearney at instead of registering online.

Two-for-one offer for NCEO company members: Register one person at $195 and bring a co-worker for no additional charge. Additional attendees are $170 each.

NCEO Company Members (either already a member or joining with this order):

One attendee (NCEO company member): $195
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Two attendees (NCEO company member): $195
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Three attendees (NCEO company member): $365
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NCEO Service Provider Members (either already a member or joining with this order):

One attendee (NCEO service provider member): $195
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Two attendees (NCEO service provider member): $365
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Three attendees (NCEO service provider member): $535
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One attendee (nonmember): $260
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Two attendees (nonmembers): $500
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Three attendees (nonmembers): $740
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Continuing Education Credit

CPE Credit

The National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO) is registered with the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy (NASBA) as a sponsor of continuing professional education on the National Registry of CPE Sponsors. State boards of accountancy have final authority on the acceptance of individual courses for CPE credit. Complaints regarding registered sponsors may be submitted to the National Registry of CPE Sponsors through its website:

This program is a "group-live" offering and provides 11.00 hours of CPE credit for accountants in the area of "specialized knowledge and applications." The material is basic level. No prerequisites or advanced preparation is needed. For more information regarding administrative policies such as complaint and refund, please contact the NCEO at 510-208-1300.

IRS Credit

The National Center for Employee Ownership (NCEO) is registered with the IRS as an approved provider of continuing education credit. This program provides 3.00 hours of IRS credit for Enrolled Retirement Plan Agents. Programs listed in other areas of our Web site are not approved for continuing education credit for Enrolled Retirement Plan Agents. Attendees must provide a PTIN with their registration in order to obtain IRS CE credit. Continuting education credit is not mandatory for tax return preparers.

SHRM Credit

This program is valid for 8.75 PDCs for the SHRM-CPSM or SHRM-SCPSM.

Cancellation Policy

A full refund will be issued, less a $50.00 administrative fee, if the request is received by the close of business on January 7, 2018. Cancellations made after that date and before our guarantee date of February 1, 2018, will be eligible for credit toward another program, minus a $50.00 administrative fee. Those canceling on or after the guarantee date will not receive a paper credit or a refund.