1915

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It is not known whether Mr. L.E. Cummings, printer and bookbinder, conceived the idea of an organization of cooperative non-competitors or whether he had read of Benjamin Franklin’s Junto. Cummings is commonly accepted as the source of the first Executives’ Association. In the fall of 1915, Cummings approached seven friends in San Francisco with his new concept of cooperation among non-competitive businessmen, the object being the promotion of the sales of each through the exchange of such information as might provide sales opportunities. The new organization was to be motivated by select businessmen for business advantage. San Francisco had a multitude of civic and service clubs. This was to be different. It was felt that there should be at least one organization of businessmen for the benefit of businessmen, unconcerned with the civic, charitable and political activities.  Shortly thereafter the group expanded to 73 members, and then one week later to 100 members and continued to grow…Such was the genesis of the Executives’ Association of San Francisco, and through its existence the start of what is called the Executives’ Association Movement.

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