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Golden State Lumber's Christine Bean wins North Bay CFO award

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Christine Bean

CFO

Golden State Lumber

855 Lakeville St., Petaluma 94952

707-206-4100

w.goldenstatelumber.com

Employees: 500-plus

Christine Bean of Petaluma-based Golden State Lumber wins one of North Bay Business Journal's CFO awards.

Professional background: HP/Agilent, Jackson Family Wines, Soutirage, currently Golden State Lumber. Adjunct Accounting Instructor at Sonoma State University and Santa Rosa Junior College

Education: MBA, Sonoma State University, concentrations in finance and accounting. B.A. business economics and management science, Sonoma State.

What do you see as the essential role of a financial leader in the current environment?

The CFO of today needs to be more than financial. They need to be the strategic partner of the owners and optimize the organization from multiple perspectives. It’s important to utilize technology to create efficiencies within the organization. Continual improvement and evolution is essential for the long-term success of a company.

What are the biggest changes you’ve seen in your industry?

Demand for construction was rebounding after the 2009 downturn and the recent natural disasters across the country have sparked additional demand in the industry. Companies in the industry are expanding their product offerings and services to meet customers’ ever-changing desires and lifestyles.

Tell us about the particular challenges and opportunities your organization has met in the recent past.

Golden State Lumber has a keen focus on the customer and has built a great reputation for our responsiveness, service, and delivery times. Our opportunity is to continue to keep up with the increasing demand in light of the tight labor market.

What advice would you give to young emerging financial leaders?

Think out of the box and challenge status quo. Don’t be afraid to take risks. Always be respectful and work hard.

What’s the best advice for weathering today’s economic environment?

Today’s economic environment is great and business is booming. This is the best time to prepare for an economic cycle, work to be more efficient, and automate where possible.

How do you think your business will change in the next five years?

Technology is a relative newcomer to the building materials/lumber industry. Many of our suppliers and customers are looking to automate and drive efficiencies throughout their organization. Technology advancements will impact every facet of our business.

What is a decision you wish you hadn’t made? What did you learn from it?

I’ve learned to trust my intuition.

What is your most memorable business experience?

I have been fortunate to work for some great companies, both large and small, public and private. This has given me broad business experience which has proven invaluable over my career. I have worked with many wonderful people over the years.

What is your greatest business success?

Helping companies identify opportunities and navigate change.

What was your toughest business decision?

Identifying when layoffs are needed and letting good people go in the best interest of the company.

What would your friends be surprised to find out about you?

I’m such an open book that I don’t think my friends would be surprised by anything.

Quick takes

Most admired business person outside the company: My husband, Tim Bean who works at Keysight Technologies. He has been a mentor and coach throughout my career. Without him, I wouldn’t be where I am today.

Toughest business decision: Identifying when layoffs are needed and letting good people go in the best interest of the company.

Christine Bean

CFO

Golden State Lumber

855 Lakeville St., Petaluma 94952

707-206-4100

w.goldenstatelumber.com

Employees: 500-plus

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