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I am pleased to announce the formal release of our new book, The SAIC Solution: Built by Employee Owners. As most of you know, in 1969 I founded a technology company with a small group of fellow scientists and engineers. This company, Science Applications International Corporation (SAIC), grew into the largest employee-owned research and engineering firm in the United States with annual revenue of more than $11 billion by 2013.

In this book, I explore the unique principles that made SAIC great, including putting people first, making employees owners, pushing decision making throughout the organization, experimenting constantly, and more. You will also hear the story of my own entrepreneurial journey of discovery and personal growth. This story is supplemented with the stories of many of the key men and women in SAIC’s history, who were interviewed specifically for this book.

With the second edition of The SAIC Solution, I also tell the story of shortcomings in succession planning and governance that led to my retirement in 2004. Within eighteen months, SAIC held an initial public offering (IPO) and subsequently dismantled its powerful employee-ownership culture. The result was reduced shareholder value, and the eventual split of SAIC into two companies, Leidos and SAIC.

The book is freshly revised with new chapters on governance and the future of employee ownership, and it includes best practices for steady and rapid growth. I hope you will take a moment to watch the trailer for the book, and that you will purchase a copy. If you’ve already got a copy of the first edition of The SAIC Solution, I think you’ll enjoy reading “the rest of the story.”

Visit the book site for more information on the book (including a video), or purchase a copy on Amazon.com.

Just a reminder that we are putting together a video for Dr. Beyster’s 90th birthday party in July, and we need your short video contributions. Please take a few minutes to record a video of up to 30 seconds, expressing your 90th birthday wishes to Dr. Beyster. He will enjoy seeing all of you again on this happy occasion. You can use your desktop or laptop computer, video camera, smart phone, or other platform to record the video.

After you record your video, simply click this link to upload it into the Dropbox folder that we have set up for this purpose. Follow the brief instructions and we will take care of the rest.

Thank you for your participation!

As a part of Dr. Beyster’s upcoming 90th birthday celebration in July, we would like to invite you to record your video birthday wishes to Dr. Beyster and upload them to our special Dropbox folder. Simply create a short (no more than 30 seconds) video using your desktop or laptop computer, video camera, smart phone, or other platform, click this link, then follow the instructions to upload your video file.

We will collect all the submitted videos and assemble them into a montage that will be played for Dr. Beyster on his birthday. We hope you will join us in wishing Dr. Beyster a happy 90th birthday!

I was pleased to learn of my daughter Mary Ann Beyster’s selection for the Judge’s Award by the Global Equity Organization at their recent annual conference in Miami. This is quite an accomplishment, and I am proud that Mary Ann was recognized by the group for her work promoting broad-based employee ownership globally.

Mary Ann and her team at the FED, along with the staff of the Beyster Institute, are accomplishing great things in the area of employee ownership. I have included a photo of the award below.

Global Equity Organization Judge's Award

* * *

On May 12th construction began on the Betty & Bob Beyster Institute for Nursing Research, Advance Practice, and Simulation at the University of San Diego. DPR (an employee-owned company, featured in the film We the Owners) is the contractor of record, and construction should be complete by August 2015.

The facility will specialize in health research for women, children, elders, veterans, and palliative care patients. To get an advance look at what the finished building will look like, please see the photo below.

Betty & Bob Beyster Institute for Nursing Research, Advance Practice, and Simulation at the University of San Diego

* * *

My friend and colleague Dr. Joseph Blasi recently appeared on MSNBC, where he talked about shared capitalism and employee ownership. It is an interesting interview and worth having a look.

I hope everyone had a good Memorial Day. Betty and I enjoyed a relaxing day at home.


I was happy to receive a published copy of The SAIC Solution, 2nd Edition today. The book is now available to purchase on Amazon.com. This update has been in the works for some time and I am pleased to see it in print.

As you may be aware, I completely revised the last couple of chapters, taking a closer look at SAIC’s governance and how the board failed to advocate for the company’s employee ownership culture after I left the company. This in my opinion fundamentally changed SAIC forever — and not for the better.

You can read more about the behind-the-scenes events that led to this unfortunate outcome, along with my advice to other founders and CEOs who want to avoid the dilution or entire loss of the company culture that they worked so hard to create and build.

* * *

Earlier this month, my wife Betty, daughter Mary Ann, and son Jim attended the 73rd Anniversary Stars and Stripes Ball sponsored by the San Diego chapter of the USO (photos below). The event was a fundraiser for the organization, which does important work for active-duty military and their families. We are proud to support the USO, and look forward to their 75th anniversary in San Diego in a couple of years.

— Bob

Photos by Melissa Jacobs/sandiegophoto.com.

I would like to take a moment to notify readers of this blog that Mike Daniels will speak on the topic of “The Core Values That Turned $4.7 Million into $19 Billion in Value Creation” in Washington DC on Monday, May 12th. The event is a part of the 2014 Lumen Leadership Speaker Series, and it will take place from 12 noon to 1:30pm at the Metropolitan Club at 1700 H Street NW in Washington. As you can probably guess, Mike’s presentation will center on SAIC’s acquisition of Network Solutions, and how we successfully grew it. Mike will also discuss how to identify investment targets during economic opportunity wave cycles. If you are interested in attending, please call the Lumen Institute at 862-432-1368.

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July 2014
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  • Jason Lichtstrahl: Dr. Beyster, I am doing a project for my financial management course I am taking at UMBC. Would...
  • Pete Ward, #59: Bob, Happy 90th Birthday!!! I’m attempting to get you a video, but I know I won’t have...
  • Dr. Beyster: Pete: Thanks for your note. I believe there will be a small gathering at the end of July where I will...
  • Dr. Beyster: Steve: It is always good to hear from you. Thank you for the birthday greetings and the kind words. You...
  • Dr. Beyster: Pamela: Thank you very much for your note. I always enjoy hearing from long-term SAIC employees. It...