Howard Brodsky, CCA global co-founder, chairman and co-CEO, has been named Business Leader of the Decade by Business NH Magazine.
Brodsky is the third individual to receive the Business Leader of the Decade award, recognizing his impact as broad, deep and long lasting, and demonstrating a profound dedication to the state of New Hampshire. Congressional leaders said in all he has done, Brodsky has brought heart and ingenuity to create permanent, positive solutions to complex societal problems.
“Howard’s visionary leadership has helped foster innovation and expand opportunity by supporting entrepreneurs and family businesses across the country through the cooperative business model,” said U.S. Senator Maggie Hassan. “Howard always puts people first and in addition to his leadership in the private sector, goes above and beyond to support critical community non-profits. We are indeed lucky to have him in our state and I am eager to see what he will accomplish next.”
Brodsky said he hopes this award will shine a light on the value of cooperatives and the power they give to independent, family-owned businesses. “While business awards and rankings often favor big corporations with powerful investors, this recognition is proof that business success and strong leadership can live harmoniously with a passion for doing good and empowering others,” said Brodsky, who also was chairman of the National Judging Panel for the North American Retail Consumer Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award. “I am certainly proud of this personal recognition. But it is the recognition of a better way of doing business that gives me the most pride and hope for the future. We are combating massive consolidation of businesses and the control Amazon, Walmart and others wield in the marketplace. We believe in leveling the playing field and giving scale to family businesses to ensure that they not only survive but thrive in America.”
Community leaders said Brodsky is a visionary social entrepreneur and a recognized, local, national and world leader of shared ownership business models. He most notably co-founded CCA Global Partners, building the organization into a $10+ billion company serving one million family businesses and 20,000 childcare centers; recently recognized as the second largest privately held company in New Hampshire, one of the largest retail companies in America, and the fourteenth largest retail cooperative in the world.
“What a deserving honor for Howard, whose leadership and impact extend across the state, the country. While Howard enjoys international fame, he remains committed to his hometown and state, remains grounded and gracious, and leads with warmth, humor, and a big heart,” said Paul Leblanc, president of Southern New Hampshire University.
Today, CCA Global Partners is the parent company of Carpet One Floor & Home, ProSource, Flooring America & Flooring Canada, The Floor Trader, International Design Guild, Savings4members, The Bike Cooperative, CCA Sports Retail Services, Lighting One, FEI Group, Lionsbridge, Innovia Co-op and CCA for Social Good. The flooring groups of CCA Global combine to be the largest retailer of flooring in the United States, outpacing Home Depot and Lowe’s. All together in his career, Brodsky has founded 22 cooperative companies and nonprofits and served on 23 boards of directors.
Brodsky is also the co-founder of The Brodsky Prize for Excellence in Student Journalism, with his son, Jeffrey; founding board member of Start.coop, a new cooperative business accelerator, with his son Greg; and founder of Cooperatives for a Better World. He founded the New Hampshire Better Business Bureau and has served as its chairman for 25 years. Working with the New Hampshire Charitable Foundation and New Hampshire Center for Nonprofits, he created Nonprofit Shared Resources, known today in New Hampshire as NonprofitNext, a web-based platform offering shared best practices and operational resources to NH-based nonprofits.
Brodsky was appointed by then-Governor Maggie Hassan to serve as vice-chair of the state’s Innovation Commission, tasked with envisioning creative solutions to longstanding struggles of state government. He is the longest serving trustee at Southern New Hampshire University, now at 18 years. Brodsky was also an instrumental leader in the merger of Eliot Hospital and Southern New Hampshire Medical Center into SolutionHealth.
He has been recognized in the Entrepreneur Hall of Fame, the World Affairs Council Global Leadership Award and named the first American to win the Rochdale Award – considered the “Nobel Prize” of global cooperatives; Brodsky received the Rochdale Award in Fall 2019 in Rwanda and was interviewed by CNBC Africa.