Our Executive Team
Jim Brush, Executive Director, E3 Rochester
Jim Brush is the executive director of E3 Rochester who has deep roots in the community as a business owner, leader and community advocate. He and his brother Douglas owned Sentry Group, a privately held manufacturer and marketer of fire resistant safes, files and chests started in Rochester by their grandfather in 1930. Brush retired as president and CEO of Sentry in 2014.
Brush serves on the boards of the United Way and the Children’s Agenda. He is also a board member at Caldwell Manufacturing, and previously served as a trustee at St. Lawrence University. He is a past board member of the Rochester Area Community Foundation and Rochester’s Child.
Prior to taking on the role of executive director, Brush served as a board member of E3 Rochester since its founding in 2013. As a board member, Brush has led E3 through a strategic planning process and he has co-chaired the E3 fundraising campaign.
Brush joined Sentry Group in 1986 and has held positions as national sales manager, vice president for sales, and chief financial officer. Prior to joining Sentry, Brush worked for IBM Corporation in various sales and marketing roles.
Brush received a bachelor’s degree in economics from St Lawrence University in 1977 and an MBA from Northwestern University in 1983.
Bryan Hickman, Chairman & Co-Founder
E3 chairman and co-founder Bryan Hickman is an entrepreneur who has served as president of several enterprises where he guided business turnarounds. His expertise has been built on positions in strategic planning and operations.
Early in his career, Bryan spent six years in public policy roles in Washington DC. Turning to a business career, he served as manager of strategy development at Gulf Oil Company and, then, General Manager for North and South America at Schlegel Corporation’s Building Products Division. He began his entrepreneurial career by turning around a bankrupt tooling and automation company and, then serving as president of bus manufacturer Coach & Equipment Manufacturing Corp.
Upon selling his business interests, he turned his focus to the most pressing problem he saw facing his community: the need to effectively educate the children of Rochester. Since January 2012, he has worked full time for E3 Rochester, meeting hundreds of educators and others in the charter school movement, visiting schools across the country, and recruiting and assisting charter management organizations.
Bryan has a bachelor’s degree from Williams College and a master’s degree from Princeton University’s Woodrow Wilson School of Public and International Affairs. He has served on the boards of the Genesee Hospital, Compeer, the Rochester Tooling and Machining Association, Rochester-Hamamatsu Sister Cities, and several corporations.
Joe Klein, Co-Founder
Joe Klein is co-founder of E3 Rochester, Inc. A resident and native of Rochester, Joe has a long history of business and community involvement.
In 2006, he turned over the day-to-day management of Klein Steel, where he still serves as chairman, to focus on educational reform. He served as chair and vice-chair of the Mayor’s Commission on Literacy from 2007–2010, giving him an inside view of the district and its potential to improve from within. He also served as a founding board member of the True North Rochester Preparatory Charter School.
Convinced that the solutions lie outside of the City School District, he turned to the nation’s experts and in 2011 and earned a master’s degree in education and policy management from Harvard University. When he asked his professors and advisors from the nation’s top educational think tanks to direct him to the city in the US where he could make the most difference for children, they told him, “Go home to Rochester.” And so he did. Since January 2012, he has worked full time for E3 Rochester, meeting hundreds of educators and others in the charter school movement, visiting schools across the country, and recruiting and assisting charter management organizations.
Joe was selected as the 2006 Rochester Business Person of the Year by the Rochester Business Alliance and named the 2009 Action for a Better Community Signature Citizen of the Year. He has also received the Brighton Alumni Award. In addition to a master’s from Harvard, Joe earned his bachelor’s degree from Syracuse University.
Our Board of Directors
CEO, Young Audiences of Rochester
Retired Deputy Mayor, City of Rochester
Rev. Sebrone Johnson
Directory of Technology, Urban League of Rochester
Senior Pastor, Greater Harvest Church
CEO, CurAegis Technologies, Inc.
Executive Director, Boys & Girls Club of Rochester
Retired Partner & Co-Owner, Brand Cool Marketing, Inc.
Associate, Nixon Peabody LLP
CEO , Regeneration Schools
President, Victor Excavating and Landscape
Administrative Vice President/Group Manager,
Our Board of Fellows
Regional President, M & T Bank – Rochester Division
CEO, Cannon Industries
Director and Executive Committee member, ESL Federal Credit Union
Albert J. Simone
President Emeritus, Rochester Institute of Technology
Owner, Distinctive Strategies