John McFarland, former chief executive officer and chairman of the board at Baldor Electric Company, will speak Feb. 20 for the quarterly breakfast meeting of the Family Enterprise Center at the University of Arkansas - Fort Smith.
The session is titled “Characteristics of Effective Leaders” and will be held at 7:30 a.m. in the Latture Conference Center in the Business and Industrial Institute Building, N. 50th and Grand Ave. Registration deadline is Feb. 15, according to Dave Robertson of Mulberry, FEC director. The event is free to FEC members and $10 for non-members.
“John has been a student of leadership styles and has made a lifetime study of historical leaders to see what made them effective,” said Robertson. “He will be sharing his thoughts on leadership and how his personal study affected the development of his career with Baldor.”
McFarland was a student at Westark Community College, now UAFS, when he began his career at Baldor in 1970. He worked his way up the ranks and was named president in 1997, CEO in 2000 and chair of the board in 2004. During his tenure of more than 40 years at Baldor, he saw the company grow from $20 million in sales to $1.9 billion, ultimately leading it to become the number one market share leader in North America.
John and his wife, Kim, are both natives of Fort Smith and are strong supporters of the local community and of continuing education. The McFarlands personally made a $1 million pledge to UAFS in February 2011, which was designated for scholarship endowments. Baldor, a member of the ABB Group, gave UAFS $1 million in June 2011 in honor of McFarland, who now serves on the UAFS Foundation Board.
Baldor Technology Center was dedicated in October 2000. Baldor and its three leading corporate officers – including McFarland – provided partial funding for the 102,170-square-foot facility.
The Family Enterprise Center is a business outreach program of the College of Business at UAFS. The FEC acts as a regional catalyst for the family in business, serving as a bridge between UAFS and the business community through educational programs and other activities that support and enhance family businesses.
Registration for the breakfast may be completed by contacting Robertson by telephone at 479-788-7931 or by email at firstname.lastname@example.org.