Gardener's Supply ESOP Story Video

ESOP Story: Gardener’s Supply Chose to Keep Its Values Intact

Gardener’s Supply, an organic and sustainable outdoor supply company, considered several options before deciding on forming an ESOP.  The company looked at its stakeholders and made the decision to become employee owned as a way to stay connected to its community, preserve its values, and support its employees.  Watch several employee owners share their stories about how the ESOP has impacted their lives while growing the company.

Louis O. Kelso Fellowships at the Rutgers Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership

EOF Executive Series

For the past four years, the Employee Ownership Foundation has funded the National ESOP Employee Survey through Louis O. Kelso Fellowships at the Rutgers Institute for the Study of Employee Ownership and Profit Sharing.

Using the data collected, the Foundation partnered with Rutgers to begin a yearlong series of academic inquiry that explores different questions that current and prospective ESOP executives and employees face. Now available is a selection of questions and key findings, as prepared by Louis B. Kelso Fellow, Jungook Kim.

Employee Ownership Foundation ESOP Stories: Harpoon Brewery

ESOP Stories: Why and How Harpoon Brewery Transitioned to Employee Ownership

Hear the story about how one of the first craft breweries in the nation became one of the most successful employee owned breweries in the world.

Employee Ownership Foundation ESOP Stories: Bob's Red Mill

ESOP Stories: Why an ESOP Made Sense for Bob’s Red Mill

You may recognize him from the cover of your favorite flour or oatmeal, Bob Moore, founder of Bob's Red Mill, based in Portland, OR, tells the story of his company's transition to employee ownership through an ESOP.

ESOP Formation Videos: Business Succession Planning

Business Succession: Introduction to ESOPs

Every company that successfully transitions to employee ownership through an ESOP is surrounded by smart advisors. We gathered just a few of these advisors to talk to you about what an ESOP is, how an ESOP company is structured, and more.

Employee Ownership is an extraordinary opportunity that should be available to everyone

When employee owned businesses prosper, everyone shares in the rewards.

Businesses grow and gain competitive advantage, employees become stakeholders and grow their wealth, and local economies gain valuable services and stable jobs.

Since 1991, we’ve been on a mission to show the world how exceptional we all can be when work—and all of its reward—become a shared experience.

Donations fund all of our efforts

The Employee Ownership Foundation is a 501(c)3 nonprofit organization dedicated to promoting the employee ownership model of business. We promote employee ownership to the public and catalyze independent, academic research about the issues those businesses face. Our activities help spark and nurture action among business owners and leaders, policy makers, employees, and the media. Our goal is for more employees to have an ownership stake in the businesses where they work and for these types of businesses to be rewarded in the market.

Contribution FAQs

  • Help company owners learn about the option of selling their businesses to their employees.
  • Pay for practical research aimed at helping existing employee owned firms excel.
  • Fund programs and academic fellowships.
  • Are fully tax deductible.


Upcoming events
Feb 08 - 10, 2023 12:30 pm CST
The Professionals' Forum 2023
Feb 21, 2023 11:30 am HST
Hawaii Chapter - 2023 Winter Membership Meeting
Feb 22, 2023 7:00 am HST
ESOP Employee Accelerator
Feb 22, 2023 8:30 am CST
Minnesota/Dakotas Chapter - 2023 Board of Directors Conference
Feb 23, 2023 7:30 am CST
Minnesota/Dakotas Chapter - 2023 Winter Conference and Roundtables

Leading in an ownership setting: the program for ceos

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This unique program helps top executives maximize their ESOPs by fostering employee owner engagement and participation that impacts the company’s bottom line.

This intensive two-week program offers an unparalleled opportunity to learn with and from other ESOP executives, forming relationships and networks that last long after the program ends. (The program facilitates ongoing networking for program alumni.)

This program is for current CEOs or Presidents of ESOP companies, or their designated successors.

The EOP/UPENN program will take place in sequential sessions. Participants should attend both sessions.

Part I: July 10-15, 2022

Part II: December 4-8, 2022

Employee Ownership is the new American Dream. When you own a stake in the company where you work, you have an unbeatable opportunity to build a better tomorrow for yourself and your family.

- Jim Bonham, President, Employee Ownership Foundation



The Edmunson Scholarship, which helps defray the cost of sending non-management employee owners to programs that promote and offer education on employee ownership.

The scholarship can be used at events offered by the Employee Ownership Foundation or The ESOP Association.

Several scholarships are awarded each year, and companies can split the award between two employee owners.

Applications will be accepted between June 1 and July 15, 2022.

For updates, please visit our Edmunson Scholarship page.


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