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in memoriam mike sacherI first met Gene when he hired me as a fledgling accountant in 1977 – almost 40 years ago. Gene was my mentor and long-time business partner, and importantly, a role model and friend.

Who could have imagined the small firm he joined shortly after leaving Coopers & Lybrand, which consisted of eight people working out of a cramped and bare-bones office in Hayward, Calif., would grow to more than 100 partners and staff and five offices across the country, becoming the No. 1 credit union CPA firm year after year? Who could have imagined that this niche firm would produce a who’s-who list of executives in credit unions across the country? And who could have imagined the scores of executives who were selected through executive search engagements led by Gene over the years? Certainly not me!

But to know Gene was to think about strategy and dream about possibilities that most of us couldn’t imagine. He opened up offices across the country in cities like Boston, Seattle and Dallas. He expanded services to include consulting, risk management and executive searches. He hosted an annual supervisory committee and board of directors’ conference in multiple cities every year. Gene was a visionary in leading our CPA firm. Those same qualities led to the success of his executive search business, O’Rourke & Associates. I’d like to share a few of those special qualities that comprised the person we knew and loved.


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