March 2017 | HARDWARE RETAILING
He coaches multiple children's sports teams
and is active in his local chamber of commerce.
He has also poured money and volunteer time
into organizations, including Children's Miracle
Network Hospitals, the Boys & Girls Clubs of
America and sports program for injured military
veterans and special needs athletes.
In addition, Jon works with local police
departments to build relationships with urban
teens and teach them basic skills to help them find
jobs. He conducts practice job interviews with
the teens and reinforces the importance of simple
things like a firm handshake and eye contact.
He also takes the children's sports teams he
coaches out volunteering, encouraging them to
help with Special Olympics events and run the
bases with special needs baseball teams.
The Next Generation
Jon thinks each of his five children may end up
bringing unique skillsets back to the business, after
they have first gone out into the world to try other
careers. His kids range in age from 8 to 21.
All them have shown interest in Phillips Hardware,
but Jon isn't pushing any of them to commit to taking
over when he's ready to retire.
"If you don't push things, it's more natural," he
says. "I don't want to make them be me. I wasn't
my father. I grew the company because I had a
community mindset. I want to open my kids up
to other avenues. If they bring back other things
to our business, it will help us stay around for
Jon Phillips (far right) and his wife Amy (far left) unload supplies for Hurricane
Sandy victims with their children Tyler, Connor, Morgan, Lindsey and Dylan.