Jim Barnes – Founder, President of The Hermitage Club at Haystack Mountain
Jim is the Founder, President of The Hermitage Club at Haystack Mountain, an exclusive, four-season private club-community that celebrates the outdoors and family fun, with private mountain activities ranging from Alpine skiing and boarding to cross country skiing, snowshoeing and 18-hole golf on a Desmond Muirhead-designed course. Located on 1,400 acres in Southern Vermont, the property is anchored by the Hermitage Inn which provides luxury hotel accommodations and five diamond dining.
Prior to founding the Hermitage Club, Jim built the largest waste and recycling management company in North America without owning a truck. OAKLEAF Waste Management aggregated large national customers like Walmart, Target, GE and Wyndam Hotels & Resorts and leveraged that portfolio to become the single largest customer of the local trash hauler while providing a sophisticated management and reporting system for customer interface. Starting in 1995 with $40,000 in capital, the company grew quickly to about $160M by 2003 when private equity firm Charterhouse partnered with the company to finance several add on acquisitions. Over the next four years with sales approaching $700M, the company was sold to a larger PE firm in 2007 and has since been purchased in 2011 by its largest competitor, Waste Management (NYSE: WMI).
While building OAKLEAF, Jim’s customers continued to request expanded facility maintenance solutions which led him in 2004 to purchase from the Enron bankruptcy, the platform company now rebranded as FM Facility Maintenance. Operating under a unique Integrated Facility Maintenance (IFM) model, FM has grown exponentially and today is one of the largest IFM companies in North America utilizing a distributed network of service providers to handle over 45 trades of service including plumbing, electrical, air conditioning, refrigeration, lighting, signage, doors, locks, roofing, snow removal, landscaping, waste management, pest control, plus specialty restaurant equipment. The company provides IFM to customers such as McDonalds, Burger King, 7-Eleven, Exxon Mobil, and Outback Steak House throughout North America. With annual sales approaching $500M, Jim led the company as Chairman and majority shareholder to a successful merger in 2013 and now focuses 100% of his time managing The Hermitage Club.
Jim serves as a trustee of Marist College, the Watch Hill Conservancy and is a former director of The Connecticut Science Center and Riverfront Recapture. Since 2009, Jim has served as a national judge for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year program and won the National Award for Business Services in 2008. Jim’s companies have received recognition in the INC 500/5000 and INC Inner City 100 a total of 10 times since 2001 and featured in Fortune Magazine, INC Magazine, FAST Company, Chain Store Age, Nation’s Restaurant News, Professional Retail Store Maintenance and The Wall Street Journal.
Overall, Jim’s present and former companies have annual revenues over $1 billion and employ over one thousand people today.
Jim resides in Avon, CT with his family.