Donor Spotlight - Steve Harlamert
Steve began his career at the age of 18, the second generation to work for the family business, Harlow Marketing, Inc., a food brokerage company that sourced, marketed, and distributed products to The Kroger Co. Shortly after he earned his BA degree in marketing from the University of Dayton, the untimely death of his father resulted in an accelerated learning curve when Steve stepped into leadership, assuming the role of vice president.
In 1997 Steve became the president of Harlow Marketing, where he began to oversee all operations of the company. On the company’s 25th anniversary, Steve purchased HRK Sales & Marketing, Inc., which led to a merger of the two businesses, re-named Harlow-HRK Sales & Marketing, Inc. Under Steve’s leadership, the company grew from 60 employees to over 300 employees in 24 states. Steve sold the company in 2016, retiring early to focus on raising his young family.
In 2009, Steve was recruited to the GCB Board of Directors by board member and now board chairman, Nick Hahn, a Kroger executive and mentor to Steve. When asked what attracted him to serve with GCB, Steve says that in addition to his close relationship with Nick, the mission of the organization ‘hits home.’ His own family has been touched by mental illness and addiction, and he has ‘tremendous compassion’ for the clients we serve.
During his ten years of service at GCB, Steve says there are several particularly memorable projects that he is proud to have experienced, most notably the successful merger of GCB with LifePoint Solutions and the Clermont Recovery Center.
“Steve’s own personal business experience and successful navigation of his own corporate merger, brought an invaluable level of understanding and guidance to our board during this critical time,” says GCB President and CEO, Jeff O’Neil.
Steve is also proud of the success of the substance abuse treatment programs in Clermont County, particularly the Community Alternative Sentencing Program (CASC). He says he continues to be impressed by the professionalism and skills of GCB employees and also celebrates alongside the organization in its continued Top Workplace designation, nine years in a row.
“My hope is that GCB will continue to grow in its capacity to serve more and more people in need,” he says. “Ultimately, that is what we’re here for.”