Sure as Sunshine

Eric Suher is a legend in Northampton, and this week got written up in Fortune Magazine. The piece dragged details I could have never learned in the five years I worked for him. He is a hard working successful entrepreneur, and has done great things for the city.

“Suher may never equal the late Bill Graham of San Francisco as a music promoter. He can’t hope to match Chicago’s legendary Sam Zell as a real estate baron. His silkscreen business, E-S Sports, pales in comparison to any one of the long-shuttered mills that made red-brick, hydro-powered Holyoke a major center for paper and textile manufacturing in the 19th century.

It might be different if he could pick just one business and focus on it, but he loves them all too much. Suher hardly fits the B-school image of the CEO who relentlessly executes his company’s core competency, but he is a familiar archetype in the landscape of American business. He’s the classic small-town entrepreneur: patient, versatile, unconventional, less concerned with growth for growth’s sake or even return on equity than with his own quirky ambitions—and deeply rooted in one place.

For Suher and others like him, it’s not about roaming or seeing what lies beyond; it’s all right here, wherever “here” may be. Every thrill, every opportunity, every outlet for passion that a life in business brings. Right here at home.”