This month we’re happy to introduce to you the CEO of our company, Denis Harper! Denis’ primary duties include strategic planning and direct oversight of Summit’s three lines of business: Branded Merchandise, Recognition Solutions, and Marketing & Communications along with general business and human resources. He also represents Summit Group in both PeerNet and IGC groups which are national and international promotional business consortiums.
Denis’ career with Summit Group (formerly known as Harper & Co.) began in June of 1980, making this his 36th year with the company! He initially joined as a part-time employee, where he was a courier, stock boy, and Administrative Assistant. He worked alongside his father John Harper, brother Michael, and friend Mark Becker, all while completing his Master’s degree. Within 2 years, he became a full-time Account Executive where he focused on building up his clientele.
When asked about a significant challenge he faces in his role as CEO, Denis commented that it would be maintaining and enhancing Summit’s “Organizational Health”. He is focused on optimizing the company’s culture and works diligently at ensuring Summit Group remains an exceptional workplace for all of their associates. Denis mentioned that the “ingredients that make up Summit consist of the principles and values that help facilitate a strong culture and create a work environment that allow the Summit associate the opportunity to grow professionally and personally.”
Something you may not know about Denis is that his original career path was Psychology rather than business. He has a Master’s degree in Psychology and was working towards a PhD in Counseling. While becoming the CEO of Summit Group may not have been his original plan, Denis’ background has proven to be instrumental in leading the company!
Denis also loves to travel, read, and spend time with his family, especially his three grandchildren. When asked about a favorite memory, Denis recalled when he and his wife, Maribeth, took their four children on a trip to Lake Powell, Utah where they actually lived on a houseboat for a week! He commented that it was an extraordinary experience! Aside from spending time with his family, he thoroughly enjoys football, tennis, golf and attending the theatre.
As Denis wrapped up his interview, he said that “the 30 plus years have been a terrific adventure that has led me through the company organization to where I am today as one of the primary owners and current CEO”. We couldn’t be more thrilled to have such a dynamic leader! Thank you for everything you have done and continue to do at Summit, Denis!
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