PFROM PFINANCE TO PFOODMAN
Kevin Miquelon, originally from Brentwood, Missouri, has led quite an interesting life since graduating with his bachelor’s degree in finance (minor in economics) from then Southwest Missouri State University in 1983. He married his high school sweetheart (fellow MSU alum Laura Pearce), started a family, worked several jobs (though none in finance) and became an entrepreneur.
Kevin’s current position is President and Partner at Pfoodman, a St. Louis-based foodservice management company that serves higher education, K-12 schools and senior living facilities. His primary role at Pfoodman is business development, but he also guides the company’s organizational and leadership development, and strategic planning and execution. Additionally, he is heavily involved in customer satisfaction and continuous improvement in all areas of the company. “Being a small business, we all wear a number of hats,” says Miquelon of his role at Pfoodman.
Of course, Kevin did not start his professional career in such a lofty position. Upon graduation from MSU, he started in a sales role with an office supply distributor. Shortly thereafter, he went into foodservice distribution for a family owned company, Craig Distributing. “We were a fast growing company and were acquired by Kraft in the late ‘80s. It was a very special time and the company grew rapidly and many on our executive team had a number of opportunities for growth and promotion.” After leaving Kraft, Kevin started his own consulting firm in 1998 and sold that business to a partner in 2003. After spending several years as a V.P. of Sales and Marketing in print distribution, Miquelon joined Pfoodman and bought into the company in 2007. When asked what he likes about his current job, Miquelon replies, “Every day is different and we continue to learn and grow. There are many challenges, but being an entrepreneur is something that gets in your system and is hard to ignore. I always look at the ‘opportunities’ for growth and get excited about making that happen.”
When asked about his time at (then) SMSU, Miquelon remembers several professors fondly. Dr. Bernice Warren was “an amazing woman” who kept him on the straight and narrow. Dr. Robert Bitter, who taught investments, was “one of the best finance professors” Kevin had at MSU. Dr. Larry Cox, economics, hammered home to Miquelon that there is no such thing as a free lunch. And Professor Ralph Manley, real estate, was “a very charismatic and inspirational teacher that pulled lessons from the real world.” Kevin worked in food distribution for Mike Duggan, fellow MSU alum and previous Chair of the Board of Governors, and is thankful that Mike has been an “amazing mentor and friend to me.”
Miquelon mentions a surprising skill he improved at MSU that has served him well over the years, in addition to the normal business disciplines. “I had typing in high school and learned to type very fast, but thought I would never use it. I then had typing in business school at MSU and once again, wondered what I would ever use it for. Then, we experienced the explosion of the PC and, lo and behold, I could type fast. That skill has served me very well in today’s technology laden world.” When not practicing his typing, Kevin was quite active on campus. He was a “founding father” of the Kappa Omicron chapter of Delta Sigma Pi and served as the Senior Vice President. He was also a Sigma Sigma Sigma ‘Big Brother’ and a Resident Assistant in Freudenberger (Freddy) Hall. Additionally, he was heavily involved in intramural sports including flag football, ultimate Frisbee, track and field, basketball and softball. His intramural track team won the championship his senior year.
Miquelon has the following advice for current FGB students: “Seize every opportunity you can get to learn, grow and lead. Be willing to push yourself and fail occasionally. The mistakes you make are only failures if you don’t learn from them. Be the best you can be…make a difference in the lives of others…and dream big!”
When Kevin isn’t working to grow the business at Pfoodman, he enjoys spending time at home in Ballwin, Missouri, with Laura, his wife of 26 years, and their children. Kevin Jr. (age 23) is an investment banker for HSBC on Wall Street. Emily (age 19) is a freshman at the University of Arkansas, Peter (age 17) is a junior in high school, and Grace (age 14) is in the 8th grade. He is also an avid outdoorsman who enjoys trout fishing.