NASHVILLE, Tenn., June 26, 2018 – The Southwestern Family of Companies, one of Tennessee’s oldest and largest private corporations, announces the promotion of Cynthia Johnstone to Executive Vice President and Treasurer.
A 26-year veteran of The Southwestern Family of Companies, Johnstone has been an instrumental executive member in all new company startups and acquisitions during her tenure. She has assisted with the development and launches of Southwestern Investment Group, Southwestern Consulting, Southwestern Real Estate, Southwestern Travel, Southwestern Tax Services and Global Educational Concepts, as well as the acquisitions of Tasty Selections, QSP and Wildtree.
“We hired Cindy 26 years ago, and the investment has paid off in spades, as we have gained one of the most talented additions to our team that I have had the pleasure to work with,” said Henry Bedford, Chairman of The Southwestern Family of Companies. “Cindy has partnered in the formation and oversight of all of our start-up businesses since then and has overseen our complex capital structure involving our unique equity plan, asset management and banking relations. She commands a tremendous knowledge in the arena of finance and corporate resources and is thorough in her research and insightful in her leadership.”
As Executive Vice President and Treasurer, Johnstone will lead the company’s Business Incubator, which offers capital, guidance, resources and synergy to aspiring entrepreneurs who build equity through stock in the consolidated company. In her expanded role, Johnstone will develop a new structure around the Business Incubator, establishing it as its own business entity.
In addition to her role as Vice President and Treasurer, Cindy has worked with Henry Bedford to oversee The Southwestern Family of Companies’ equity plan. As Executive Vice President and Treasurer, Cindy will be responsible to assure that the plan’s design will continue to provide a legacy of ownership for future generations of employees since the death of Spencer Hays in 2017. Under her leadership and tenure, The Southwestern Family of Companies has grown from four to 16 companies, providing a 15 percent annual compounded return to the employees and owners through the company’s equity plan since 1982.
Johnstone also serves on multiple boards, including the Southwestern and Great American Boards of Directors, previously held the position of Assistant Treasurer from 1996-2005 and was promoted to Vice President, Corporate Secretary and Treasurer in 2006.
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The Southwestern Family of Companies is made up of 16 companies in industries that includes: Great American – the largest school fundraising business worldwide, who has raised over $5.5B for schools; Southwestern Investments – the number one Raymond James Financial Planning firm worldwide, with over $3B in assets under management; Southwestern Advantage – the oldest direct sales business in the US; Southwestern Tax Services; Southwestern Real Estate; Thinking Ahead – Middle Tennessee’s number one executive search firm; Southwestern Publishing; Wildtree – one of the fastest growing party planning businesses in America – selling organic food, meal replacement shakes and spices; Southwestern Travel; Global Educational Concepts – visa sponsorship business; Southwestern Insurance – property and casualty insurance; Southwestern Consulting & SBR – speaking, coaching, and consulting. For more information about The Southwestern Family of Companies: www.southwestern.com