Mt. Olive Pickle president honored for business practices, service
By Steve Herring
Published in News on June 21, 2010 1:46 PM
Bill Bryan, left, president of Mt. Olive Pickle Co., examines the "Being A Difference Award" trophy, along with David Costello, president and chief executive officer of the National Association of State Boards of Accountancy.
MOUNT OLIVE -- Bill Bryan, the president of Mt. Olive Pickle Co., was honored last week with a national award that recognizes people and organizations that display ethical leadership in their communities.
Bryan received the Being a Difference Award from the nonprofit National Association of State Boards of Accountancy Center for the Public Trust.
"It is not just for people who aspire to be a difference, but people who are truly, truly a difference," said Lisa Axisa, executive director for the center. "We felt Bill Bryan absolutely embodied that."
He was nominated by Mount Olive accountant Barton Baldwin, a former chairman of the NASBA board.
"Bill leads Mt. Olive Pickle Co. with a moral compass grounded in integrity, a sense of fairness, and a deep commitment to family, company and community. Bill encourages those same vales from his employees, his vendors and shareholders," Baldwin said.
He said Bryan and his company have a proven history of helping the community, not just Mount Olive, but all of Wayne County and the surrounding area.
"With what the Center for the Public Trust does as far as working toward companies having good business ethics, integrity and I always knew Bill had these things. Also, a part of it is your involvement in the community. The pickle plant has always been heavily involved in the community," Baldwin said. "I think it shows what the company does and what it stresses for its employees, what they stress for their shareholders, what they stress for their vendors -- good business practices and good ethics and always having integrity."
David Costello, president and CEO of the NASBA Center for the Public Trust, said he created the award amid the scandals surrounding companies such as Enron and World Com.
Costello said that with all the negative publicity about businesses and business leaders, he decided to turn a spotlight on those he knows are honest and ethical, interested in the welfare of others.
"I wanted to tell that story and that is what the center is about, telling the story of the other 99.9 percent of CPAs and attorneys and CEOs and not just the one-tenth of one percent that get it wrong," he said.
"There is reason to celebrate this man," Costello said. "There is reason to celebrate what you have done in this community, what you have done at Mt. Olive Pickle Co. and this community. I personally think it is important to make a living, but I believe it is more important to live your making. I am convinced that Bill Bryan was made for a special purpose and that you people are very fortunate in Mount Olive because you get to experience that. We honor you as one who lives his making.
"The award says presented to Mt. Olive Pickle Co. and I believe that Bill wanted it that way, but we know who is the spirit behind that, who is the leader."
Malcom T. Murray Jr., chairman of the company's board of directors, said if Bryan had his way, "We probably would not be assembled here at this time. He is not the sort of guy who relishes this kind of attention.
"The success of Mt. Olive Pickle is in large part a reflection of Bill's leadership over the last number of years. But success here is measured by more than just the bottom line. The company's roles as a profitable enterprise, progressive employer, valued corporate citizen are all hallmarks of Bill's vision and guidance. He is quick to give credit to his management team and the employees of the company, and they have played a huge role. There is no doubt about that. But he is the leader and he has set the tone for how this company has operated."
Bryan said he was humbled by the recognition. He credited his parents with teaching him the importance of doing more than just making money, of giving back to the community. And he praised the people who work for the company as generous and truly committed to making their community a better place.
"It all starts with a simple concept making a quality product in a responsible way that represents a good value to our customers," Bryan said. "If we do that, well we have opportunities -- opportunities to be a preferred employer, opportunities to be a valued corporate citizen and opportunities to represent a good investment for or shareholders. My fellow employees have caused the company to be successful over the years."