CEO Perspectives: 4 CEOs Discuss Why They Chose the State They’re In

Four CEOs give their perspective on why they chose the state their business is in.

Chairman and CEO
Callison Architecture Holding
An architecture and engineering firm

Site History: Established in Seattle in 1975, Callison moved to the U.S. Bank Centre in downtown Seattle in1994. The fi rm leases three of 44 floors in the 580-foot tall tower, which it designed. Callison has more than 400 employees at headquarters and another 600-plus working out of 11 offices worldwide, including New York, London, Shanghai, Beijing, Guangzhou and Dubai.

Why Seattle?: “Our location here provides us with access to our markets in Asia, in particular, China. We have offices in Shanghai, Beijing and Guangzhou and have done business in some 78 cities in China. Access to Seattle-Tacoma International Airport is very important as we are a global firm. I fly once or twice a week and put in over 150,000 miles a year.”

Reason for Location: Seattle was the hometown of founder Tony Callison, who cultivated relationships with chiefs at such local firms as Nordstrom, Amazon, Microsoft and Boeing.

President and CEO
The Alternative Board
Business advisory boards and executive business coaching

Site History: Established in 1990 by Allan Fishman, who took space in a series of St. Louis office buildings. Fishman relocated to Colorado in 2000, where he set up headquarters in a series of office buildings in Aspen, then Denver. In 2007, new chief Jason Zickerman purchased a two-story, 24,000 square-foot office building in Westminster and moved operations there.

Why Westminster?: “We are centrally located between Denver and Boulder. We have plenty of parking. We are next to state trails where employees can ride, go biking and hiking in their off time. I enjoy rock-climbing nearby. We have beautiful views of mountains and we’re just 12 minutes from my home.”

Reason for Location: “The natural beauty of Colorado and appeal of its outdoor lifestyle.”

Director and CEO
Ormat Technologies
Alternative renewable energy technology

Site History: Founded in 1965 as Ormat Turbines Ltd. in Yavne, Israel, the renewable-energy company moved to the United States in 1972 when its principals, Lucien and Dita Bronicki, immigrated. The company scouted for office space in California, Utah and Nevada before deciding on Nevada. Main production facilities are in Yavne.

Why Reno?: “We outgrew our space and moved nearby to Reno.”

Reason for Location: “Nevada has no corporate tax. Nevada has a substantial number of geo-thermal plants, which was the direction we were expanding our activities as a company. We received support from the legislature. We set up first in Sparks in 1986, then moved to Reno in 2006.”

CEO and Co-founder
Organic, non-GMO fresh juices, smoothies and frozen items

Site History: Ryan Black and two co-founders started out renting about 3,000 square feet of office space in San Clemente, California, in 2003. Four years later, the expanding company moved to its current business park location, absorbing about 10,000 square feet.

Why San Clemente?: “We may have the best climate in the world, and the whole surf and action-sports industry is here.”

Reason for Location: “My brother Jeremy and I grew up in Southern California. We were both living here and it made perfect sense to us to bring our product up from Brazil. Here in Southern California you have a really health-conscious and educated population.”


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