In 1990, Lee went to his client base to see if they would be interested in a more comprehensive Human Resource solution for administering benefits and payroll, and based on a favorable response he formed Alabama Staff, Inc., which ultimately became known as amsource. That same year Lee also sponsored a 401(k) plan which was a key part of the new company’s benefit plan. In 1999 Lee converted the single employer plan to a multiple employer plan.
amsource grew to become one of the largest Professional Employer Organizations in the southeast. In 2009, Lee established 401k SAFE to expand the 401(k) multiple employer plan offering to non PEO clients. In 2010, Lee sold amsource, which had grown to $150 million in annual sales. Today, Lee serves as president, and plan sponsor of 401k SAFE, and is focused exclusively on 401k SAFE. Lee is also a member of the Birmingham Entrepreneurial Round Table.
Lee and his wife of 20 years have two children and live in Birmingham, Alabama. Lee spends as much time as possible with his kids. He also spends time teaching kids karate. Lee has been a longtime supporter of Children’s Hospital in Birmingham and also supports the Birmingham Jewish Federation and the Red Cross.
Jim Sharp, CRPS is a partner at 401k SAFE, and serves as Channel Manager supporting the sales efforts of financial advisors across the country. He also manages the marketing efforts of 401k SAFE including the content of sales material and webinars. Jim was involved in the rollout of 401k SAFE in 2009, and that same year, he obtained the designation of Chartered Retirement Plan Specialist® from the College for Financial Planning.
Jim received a B.A. in finance from Birmingham Southern College in 1987. Upon graduation, Jim worked as commercial lines producer for McGriff, Seibels and Williams, one of the largest commercial property and casualty firms in the country. Jim became the youngest officer in the company’s history in 1990, as an Assistant Vice President. During his tenure at McGriff, Jim managed the sales for one of McGriff’s subsidiary companies that increased their revenues five-fold in two years.
In the 1990’s Jim served as National Sales Manager for Keswick Associates, a human resource software consulting firm formed in Atlanta from Dun & Bradstreet Software. His responsibilities at Keswick included software and consulting sales, as well as oversight of Keswick’s marketing strategy. In 1999, Jim joined Oracle as a regional sales manager for Oracle’s HR and ERP software applications.
In 2004, Jim joined amsource, a human resource outsourcing (HRO) company, to help with their strategy to market to larger employers. Jim served as sales manager and marketing director.
In 2005, Jim began work on educating employers about ERISA fiduciary responsibility as a 401(k) plan sponsor. He co-authored an article for the Community Bankers Association of Alabama in 2005 that highlighted the fiduciary responsibilities and potential liability of sponsoring a 401(k).