Shepard introduces Board of Directors

Shepard Enhances Organizational Governance by Introducing Board of Directors 

ATLANTA, GA – Shepard, an industry-leading event production provider, proudly announces the establishment of its Board of Directors, effective January 2024. 

Aligning with Shepard’s commitment to Employee Stock Ownership (ESOP), the introduction of the Board signifies a pivotal milestone in the company’s evolution. While ESOP remains integral to Shepard’s culture, the Board signifies a strategic initiative aimed at delivering diverse benefits to the company and its stakeholders. 

Comprising industry experts, the Board brings independent perspectives and diverse experiences to guide Shepard’s senior executive team. This move reflects Shepard’s dedication to excellence, extending beyond the ESOP to broader aspects of organizational governance.

“The advent of Shepard’s Board of Directors signifies a significant moment in our company’s trajectory, reflecting our strong commitment to shaping the future of Shepard with a continued emphasis on service and innovation. I am proud of Shepard’s longstanding legacy and look forward to witnessing the continued growth and evolution of the company guided by our employee-owners and accomplished board,” stated Carl Mitchell, Executive Chair at Shepard.

As of January 1, 2024, the board consists of the following members:

Khalil Johnson, Former Chief Operating Officer of the Georgia World Congress Center Authority

Johnson served as the Chief Operations Officer of the Georgia World Congress Center Authority, overseeing the operations of a major convention complex. His distinguished career, encompassing leadership roles and successful project management, coupled with his contributions to various organizations, positions him as a highly knowledgeable and influential figure in the field.

Frank Villamar, Chief Financial Officer at Miller Zell

Villamar’s financial expertise demonstrated during his six and a half years as Chief Financial Officer at Shepard underscores his valuable contributions to the organization, a skillset he continues to leverage in his current role at Miller Zell.

Debra Williams, Former Senior Vice President, ESOP Client Services at GreatBanc Trust Company

Williams brings extensive expertise in employee ownership, financial services, and board leadership. Her current board positions at Consigli Building Group and Halloran Consulting Group, along with her distinguished career at GreatBanc Trust Company, highlight her deep industry involvement and significant contributions to Employee Stock Ownership Plans (ESOP).

Kevin Bird, Chief Executive Officer at Shepard

With over two decades of industry expertise, Bird directs strategic growth with a focus on internal culture and customer-centric outcomes as Shepard’s Chief Executive Officer. His prior role as Executive Vice President of Sales at Shepard and contributions at Nielsen Business Media highlight his commitment to growth and innovation.

Carl Mitchell, Executive Chair at Shepard

Mitchell, a trade show industry veteran since 1971, purchased Shepard in 1982. His extensive leadership roles include serving on boards for the Atlanta Convention Visitor Bureau and the Exhibition Service Contractors Association. 
Kevin Bird, CEO of Shepard, affirms, “Our introduction of the Board of Directors amplifies Shepard’s commitment to excellence, reflecting our dedication to achieving success for the benefit of our business and, ultimately, our valued customers. We look forward to leveraging the diverse expertise of our board members to drive innovation and continued growth.” 

About Shepard  

Shepard is a nationwide event production company with a rich legacy dating back to 1905. Specializing in corporate events, trade shows, conferences, and exhibits, Shepard is dedicated to providing exceptional customer service and fostering connections through innovative event solutions. With a comprehensive suite of services and employee-ownership model, Shepard is a trusted leader in producing memorable event experiences. To learn more about Shepard, please visit 

Shepard is a full-service event production company. We design, develop and manage trade shows, corporate and other events throughout the U.S.