When Summit County Beef hired Tom Richardson as its new executive director, the local nonprofit did so in the hopes to bolster its online presence with locals and build stronger relationships with Park City and Salt Lake City restaurants. Richardson replaced replacing former executive director Whitney Williams.
"This job fits with what I've been pursuing over the past few years," Richardson said. "Summit County Beef helps the local economy grow. It really is about supporting local farmers and ranchers with product, keeping it local."
Richardson was hired earlier this month and has since been on the road traveling to local meat packing plants and meat processors and visiting ranchers.
"The board knew we wanted someone who had business experience so that we can turn it into a business," said Jim Craghead, board member of Summit County Beef as well as the board president of Summit County Beef's main sponsor, Uintah Headwaters Resource Conservation and Development Center. "When we first started, we were working to get ranchers on board with the program. Once we got that in place, we needed to sell the beef. We needed someone who has started their own business."
Founder and former Kimball Junction Business Association, Richardson has been a business owner and entrepreneur in Park City for decades. In recent years, he created the Locals Card, a discount card for those living and working in the community. So when he decided to put in for the position, he did so from a business owner's perspective, just what Summit County Beef was looking for.
"Our first goal is to increase sales, obviously," Craghead said. "As nonprofit, we want to get up and running and turn it over to itself, to create a business that can sustain itself while helping ranchers."
"We'd like to expand to include lamb and pork products," he added, "anything raised in Summit County Richardson has the connections, and more importantly, he has the get up and go. He is enthusiastic and personable and we think he can deal with different restaurateurs."