|Membership level: Hall of Fame
James F. Bere
Inductee Year 2014
|James F. Beré, Jr. ’68 was an outstanding swimmer and diver at Hinsdale Central, later graduating from Indiana University, and earning his M.B.A. in Finance from the University of Illinois. Jim continued to be involved in diving after high school. He earned three varsity letters at Indiana University and during graduate school he was the head diving coach at the University of Illinois.
Jim spent his early career working in the financial areas at BP and Sara Lee Corporation in the Chicago area. He then spent several years working in brand management at Kimberly-Clark Corporation in Neenah, Wisconsin.
In 1982, he cofounded Ameritel Corporation in Neenah, Wisconsin, where he served as president and CEO (1982–1990) before selling the company. Five years later, Jim cofounded and became the CEO of Alta Resources, which, like his first company, was named to Inc. 500’s list of “Fastest-Growing Companies in the U.S.” In 2004, he was named the “Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year®” for business and technology in Wisconsin.
Alta Resources today is a Business Process Outsourcing company of over 4,000 people with facilities in Neenah, Wisconsin, Fort Myers, Florida, Brea, California and Manila, Philippines. Alta serves Fortune 100 and 500 organizations in the Consumer Package Goods, Entertainment and Health Care and Insurance industries.
Outside of Alta Resources, Jim has served on the boards of several non-profit organizations. He spent twelve years as a member of the Theda Care Board, the third largest health care employer in Wisconsin with 6,100 employees, 5 hospitals and 22 physician clinics, and served as their chairman for six years. He has chaired the Fox Cities United Way Campaign and served has the chair of their Leadership Giving Committee. Jim also served on World Vision board for 18 years. World Vision is a Christian nonprofit, humanitarian organization dedicated to providing community-based relief and development programs globally. World Vision works in 105 countries around the world and has over 45,000 employees. During his 18 years, Jim has served as chairman of World Vision USA® for 10 years, as well as a board member and Finance Committee chairman for World Vision International®. Jim has traveled the world with World Vision to better understand the impact of and possible solutions for and poverty, major disasters and social injustice.
Jim has also served on the board of Associated Bank Fox Cities and is currently on the board of Legacy Private Trust.
Jim is married to Sue Sexton, a 1971 graduate of Hinsdale Central. They have three children and two grandchildren. Their daughter Allison is married to a Hinsdale Central graduate Rob Knuepfer and they have two children with a third on the way. Their sons, Jim and John are currently enjoying a return to academic life working on their MBAs after working for several years.
Jim and Sue live in Neenah Wisconsin and also spend time in Florida.