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Recognizing 100 CEOs & C-level Executives
Paul Alexander Executive Wood Products, Inc

Paul Alexander

Founder & CEO

Executive Wood Products, Inc.

Location: Sullivan, MO

Founded: 1982

Industry: Wood Products Manufacturing

In 1982, Paul Alexander invented a desktop peanut/candy dispensing machine with a proprietary eccentric cam delivery mechanism as a Christmas gift. It was the most popular gift at the Christmas party so he immediately changed the design to be easier to manufacture, drew a mechanical drawing and built a prototype. “I borrowed woodworking machines, saved $100 out of my self-appointed lunch money for materials and set up a small factory in the basement of my home,” said Alexander.

Over the next few years, Alexander sold more than 2,000 machines and by 1989, moved into the company’s current 43,000 square foot factory building. As the founder and CEO of Executive Wood Products, Alexander invented the first tabletop folding lectern to meet a need from the VFW central organization. The product was a success and opened the door to selling, designing, building and selling lecterns to churches. By 1995, the firm won its first government contract and has maintained it.

Executive Wood Products is the largest single supplier of high-quality lecterns and podiums to the U.S. government as well as governments and businesses in 45 countries worldwide. Following the tragedy of 911, Alexander and his team began research and development for anti-ballistic products with the hope of contributing to the safety of society. By 2006, the firm was well-entrenched in the anti-ballistic market and soon became a leader.

“Over the last 41 years as the economy and technology changed, I continually reinvented the company to make it functional, relevant and profitable,” said Alexander. “When times were hard, I made any and all necessary sacrifices to protect our employees and our company legacy.”

His efforts have led to the company’s recognition as one of the top 50 small businesses in the St. Louis Market and were featured in the Congressional Spotlight by the U.S. Congress. Alexander’s products are recognized as the most desirable in the entertainment industry and appear in movies and series such as Yellowstone, Madam Secretary and Iron Man.

As a leader, Alexander said he strives to have the heart of a servant with regards to customers, employees, suppliers and their own families. “Successful leaders treat everyone with exemplary consideration and are willing to do whatever it takes to be successful, as long as it is legal, ethical and moral,” he said. “They understand that their success is dependent upon the success of others and surround themselves with great people and work every day to ensure those people are successful in their own right.”

For his passion for innovation and leading with a heart of a servant, Alexander has been named a titan.

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Did you know?

My superpower is an engineer mindset coupled with a passion for people. Within this mindset my skills are threefold. First is my ability to retain everything of importance I see and recall it at any time. Second, I have an aptitude for reading people, their minimal indicators, expressions, tone, and word choices. The third leg in my superpower is my aptitude for solving complex problems quickly and accurately with an extremely high percentage of success.


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