Update: Penguin event with Dick’s CEO cancelled

Monday, November 11, 2019 | 6:01 AM

Editor’s note: Penguin Bookshop has announced the event is cancelled.

If you’ve ever wondered what makes Dick’s Sporting Goods a success, now you will have a chance to ask the man behind it all.

On Nov. 14 at 7 p.m., Sewickley’s Penguin Bookshop will host an event with Dick’s chairman and CEO Ed Stack to talk about his memoir, “It’s How We Play the Game: Build a Business. Take a Stand. Make a Difference.” The book was published by Scribner in October.

The event will include a brief talk by Stack and a question-and-answer session, followed by a book signing.

“We’re lucky to have this opportunity,” said Susan Hans O’Connor, owner of Penguin Bookshop. “Most families, you walk into Dick’s and you buy your family their soccer shoes. It’s sort of like the Dick’s family is part of all of our families. This is a way to get a glimpse at the ethos that stands behind that store that we all walk into every day.”

The book provides a look into how Stack, who purchased the business from his father when he was in his 20s and there were only two stores, grew the company into the nation’s largest sporting goods retailer.

It also delves into his decision, following the 2018 mass shooting at the high school in Parkland,Fla., for Dick’s to no longer sell assault-style firearms or any guns to customers younger than 21 years old. In what some considered a controversial move, Dick’s destroyed $5 million of assault-style rifles so they would not make their way back into circulation.

Brian Belfiglio, vice president and director of publicity for Scribner, said in an email to the Sewickley Herald that his company is “proud to be the publisher of ‘It’s How We Play the Game’ — a book for those seeking a model of corporate leadership in complicated times, entrepreneurs, and anyone simply looking for a great read about American retail. We are thrilled that the Penguin Bookshop will be hosting Ed Stack for what we believe will be a special book event on November 14.”

Those interested in attending are asked to call the Penguin Bookshop at 412-741-3838 to reserve a seat and a copy of the book.