Beacon (Formerly GPSEG)
Was Founded by Chris Pavlides in May, 2002
Recognizing the need for a valuable networking experience for senior executives in the Philadelphia region, founder Constantine ‘Chris’ Pavlides decided to create a bi-weekly networking event he called The Power Networking Breakfast. Under the motto "Networking for Life", he set out to help his colleagues and peers become more skilled and fulfilled members of the Delaware Valley business community.
The morning events provided a space for business leaders to leverage the collective power of their networks by exchanging ideas, helping those in career transitions, and growing their individual businesses. Word of Pavlides’ approach spread rapidly and eventually grew into the full-fledged membership organization Beacon is today.
The group initially functioned as a chapter of the New York City-based International Executive Resources Group, a non-profit professional association for executives who have lived and worked outside of their home countries at senior levels. Given the widespread local interest, it quickly became evident that the Philadelphia chapter needed to expand membership opportunities to all senior executives, regardless of industry or international background. The group became independent in June 2002, adopting the GPSEG name and incorporating the following year. In 2004, the Internal Revenue Service certified the group as a 501(c)6 tax-exempt professional business association.
In January 2003, the newly formed GPSEG tasked a management team with designing a structure to meet the growing demand for events, membership and programming. The team established Committees to handle various aspects of organizational management, and Subgroups for members with similar backgrounds and interests to design events and programming. Those functions remain in place today, as Beacon’s leadership is now comprised of Executive Director Diane James, a 12 member Board of Directors, and the chairs of Committees, Subgroups, and other working and interest groups.