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I'm Invested: Joe Readling

Over the last 23 years, our employee ownership has shown its value on our culture and the way we approach our work. And Joe Readling has been there since the beginning.

An HDR employee since 1985, Joe is now “practicing retirement” at age 55, working part-time in our Charlotte office. He purchased HDR stock the first time it was made available to all employees.

“I’ve heard the employee-ownership discussion since 1996,” he said. “I’m wired into it. I hear people talk about the importance of the culture, and I drink the Kool-Aid. I went from working in an office of 60 people in 1985 to now there are over 250 of us. And that growth is directly attributable to each of us having our own piece of the company.”

Joe said that one of the most noticeable aspects of ownership is how it’s treated by the leadership of HDR. We want to protect our model and sustain it for future generations. Leadership listens to the owners and makes decisions in the best interest of the employees. He’s also quite fond of the return on his investment over the years.

“We don’t know what the future holds,” he said, “but very modest investments in employee ownership over the years has afforded me the flexibility to retire at 55 with probably double the savings I would have otherwise. That’s something I want newer employees to understand.”

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