The Lewis Family has announced the establishment of the Jim O’Brien Leadership Award, created to honor a valued friend, coach, and mentor. “Jim is a lifelong leader who is in the ‘arena’ and who day after day is willing to tackle the tough issues and make the hard decisions,” said Alan Lewis, Chairman of Kensington Investment Company. “He has the guts to tell us the truth – no matter how ugly – and he exemplifies moral courage, integrity, compassion, and an uncommon grace and humility in his approach to life and work.” The award named in his honor is presented to a Kensington Investment Company or Grand Circle Corporation associate who has gained wisdom from his or her experience, whose counsel is sought out by others, and who willingly shares with his or her colleagues to help them grow and develop. The recipient must show unwavering loyalty to the company and team and challenges team members to take one more step than they thought they could. The recipient exemplifies leadership and teamwork, and shows keen judgment in making hard decisions.
Jim O’Brien is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and the U.S. Army’s Elite Airborne and Ranger Schools. He led numerous troops, served in Vietnam, and achieved the rank of Captain. After retiring from the military, he joined General Investment and Development (GID) as an apartment manager and retired 27 years later as the company’s Chairman. In 1995, he joined The Kensington Investment Company and Grand Circle Corporation, serving in many key strategic advisor, board, and leadership roles. “For more than 20 years, Jim has shared his life experience to help teach, guide, and develop the company’s leadership from our youngest emerging leaders to our most senior executives,” Alan added. “We rely on his leadership, judgment, wisdom, and quiet strength, and appreciate his generosity of time to listen and share his counsel.”