2014 Forty Under 40: Scott Moorehead

Lou Harry
February 1, 2014
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moorehead_scott_1col.jpg (IBJ Photo/Aaron P. Bernstein)

Succession: In 2008, at age 30, Scott Moorehead took over cell phone service The Cellular Connection from his parents. By 2012, the company’s revenue grew from $191.2 million to $606.5 million.

Teamwork: When you take over a family business, some people think everything is given to you. That you have it easy. But, said Moorehead, “I work my butt off and put a great team around me, none of whom were here when I took over. That’s a huge part of my success: my ability to hire and fit the right people into the right spots on the organizational chart.”

A structured education: The decision to commit to the family business came while studying at Purdue University. “I geared my education toward learning what I needed to know to get into this business.” The upside and downside? “You have the luxury of excluding what you don’t need to know … and the stress of taking over a multimillion-dollar company.”

Bringing work home: “Even when my brother and I were younger, we didn’t talk about work at the dinner table. It was a rule of my mom’s.”

Employee training: Moorehead stressed that, at The Cellular Connection, the employees have voices. “It took me a long time to build that culture here, where people can speak their mind. It’s a lot easier to tell them why ideas won’t work than to pry ideas out of them. I’d rather teach a pit bull to sit than teach a poodle to kill.”

AGE 36
Hometown: Marion

Family: wife, Julie; children Mason, 7, and Marlee, 5

Looking ahead: “In 2014, we’re going to look at another year of expansion. 2013 was about pulling it into the pit. It tends to go in these cycles where you have to pause and realize what you are good at. Once you fix your balance, you can go ahead and move forward.”

Giving back: Since 2011, the Moorehead Family Foundation has supported a variety of causes, especially those that help “tiny hands and furry paws.”

Down time: Moorehead calls himself a live-music junkie. “My wife and I—she’s definitely my partner in crime—have been to over a hundred shows apiece. Marlee saw Madonna in utero. Mason saw Van Halen in utero. I used to have a list of people I wanted to see, but that list is dwindling. Most of the people I want to see, but haven’t, are dead.”•


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  1. I am also a "vet" of several Cirque shows and this one left me flat. It didn't have the amount of acrobatic stunts as the others that I have seen. I am still glad that I went to it and look forward to the next one but I put Varekai as my least favorite.

  2. Looking at the two companies - in spite of their relative size to one another -- Ricker's image is (by all accounts) pretty solid and reputable. Their locations are clean, employees are friendly and the products they offer are reasonably priced. By contrast, BP locations are all over the place and their reputation is poor, especially when you consider this is the same "company" whose disastrous oil spill and their response was nothing short of irresponsible should tell you a lot. The fact you also have people who are experienced in franchising saying their system/strategy is flawed is a good indication that another "spill" has occurred and it's the AM-PM/Ricker's customers/company that are having to deal with it.

  3. Daniel Lilly - Glad to hear about your points and miles. Enjoy Wisconsin and Illinois. You don't care one whit about financial discipline, which is why you will blast the "GOP". Classic liberalism.

  4. Isn't the real reason the terrain? The planners under-estimated the undulating terrain, sink holes, karst features, etc. This portion of the route was flawed from the beginning.

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