Friday, August 6, 2010

AN INTERVIEW WITH…Derek Schwerzler, Stephen Gould Corporation

Stephen Gould Corporation was founded in 1939 on the philosophical ideals and business visions of Stephen Gould and David Golden. They set out to create a corporate environment that would recognize the preeminent role of the customer within the processes of manufacturing and supply structure. Since this time Stephen Gould Corporation has grown to be a half billion dollar business with over 60 locations worldwide, still privately held by the same family. Stephen Gould has been designing and manufacturing a wide variety of packaging and custom kitting solutions for over half a century. They have long been recognized for consulting and implementing various systems of tool control, specialized packaging, distribution and integrated supply throughout the government and private sector.

Stephen Gould is GSA approved and serves a variety of industries from aerospace to retail. Many of our facilities are ISO-9001 certified and our Duluth location is a green facility. Stephen Gould is an industry leader and has won an award for their custom tool kitting solutions for Northrup Grumman.

Derek Schwerzler, who is a Gwinnett Chamber board member and co-chair for the 2010 Membership and Sponsorship Campaign, joined Stephen Gould 10 years ago after graduating from the University of Georgia. He chose Gwinnett County not only as a place to work, but a place to raise his family. His wife Shelly and their son make Duluth their home. Many of Derek's customers are also local Gwinnett businesses.

Derek initially joined the Chamber because he wanted to become more involved with his community and wanted to learn more about the county that he calls home. As it turned out for Derek, the Chamber has turned out to be so much more.

"My business has grown significantly through the business relationships and friendships I've made through the Chamber. Being involved with the Chamber has opened a referral stream I never thought possible," said Derek.

Involvement in the Chamber has also allowed Derek the opportunity to give back to the community in a variety of ways. He currently serves on the Chamber board, the Manufacturing and Logistics Council, the Gwinnett Student Leadership board, and The Gwinnett Clean and Beautiful board. Derek is also very involved with Partnership Gwinnett and a recent graduate of Leadership Gwinnett. And lastly, Derek is serving his community as a Rotarian and serves as President of the Rotary Club of Gwinnett Mosaic.

Creating Jobs & Wealth

Q. As the 2010 Co-Chair of the Chamber's Membership and Sponsorship volunteer-led Campaign, why is it beneficial for business executives to support the Chamber's mission of creating jobs and wealth through the campaign?

The campaign is a way for members of the Chamber to come together and support each other as well as the growth and strength of the Chamber. Through the campaign new members and potential members can see the power of our membership, the quality of referrals and the vast number of educational opportunities offered by the Chamber.

New businesses joining the Chamber are introduced to a multitude of opportunities to help their businesses grow and gain exposure not only in Gwinnett, but worldwide. Members have the opportunity to showcase their products and services through sponsorships, weekly networking events, ads and speaking engagements at Network Gwinnett. The funds raised through our membership campaign have allowed us to offer exceptional educational opportunities to all members.

Growing Your Business
Q. As a business executive, you have been very involved with the Chamber as a Chairman's Club member and have been actively involved in the Chamber's Membership and Sponsorship Campaign and many other chamber programs and events. How has being involved with these programs helped to grow your business?

The Gwinnett Chamber and specifically, the Chairman's Club, has given me the opportunity to speak with leaders in the community who have acted not only as mentors, but have been great referral sources, business partners and friends. Sponsoring events has allowed me to showcase my products and services, raise awareness of Stephen Gould Corporation and support the growth of the Chamber and the community. Through the Chamber, opportunities that would have never come my way with regard to business now occur on a daily basis.

Strengthening the Community

Q. Volunteers who join or start a team with the Campaign will have the satisfaction of knowing they are helping to strengthen the community by providing funds to sustain programs for business development, community improvement and member services. What are some of the other benefits of getting involved with the Campaign?

Being a part of the campaign has allowed me to network with likeminded professionals. It has allowed me to grow professionally as a leader. It has allowed me to build long term relationships and it has nurtured my competitive spirit. The Campaign Reward Sessions in particular are a great opportunity to get to know leaders in the community, learn more about the Chamber and its work, to improve the Gwinnett region, and to have fun! The opportunity to win a trip to Aruba is also a wonderful incentive. I would like to invite all Chamber members to join us in our efforts to help the Gwinnett Chamber become even stronger and more vital for the future.

For more information on Stephen Gould Corporation, contact Derek at 770-364-6202. Visit their Web site at; for industrial visit

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