Joe Ritzel to Retire: Thank You for 40 Years at Day & Zimmermann

As you know, I will soon be retiring from Day & Zimmermann after 40 years of service to the Company. This decision was not an easy one, and with it I carry so many emotions and an overwhelming sense of gratitude. Day & Zimmermann has truly been a second family to me, I have built so many wonderful relationships here and I feel very fortunate to have loved what I was doing for so long. But before I say more, let’s briefly go back to the very beginning. 

My career started with Touche Ross & Co (now Deloitte) back in 1980. After three years with them, I joined Day & Zimmermann on March 8, 1983, and let’s just say it stuck. I began at D&Z as a controller for Systems Engineering Associates (SEACOR), our government services business in New Jersey, and coincidentally moved to Philadelphia on April 1 (1991) to serve in a variety of financial roles as explained in Hal’s announcement prior to assuming my current role as Chief Financial Officer in 2001. During this time, the Company grew dramatically in size and sophistication, while maintaining its reputation as a values-based company.

As I reflect on my career at Day & Zimmermann, there is a long list of people I would like to thank. Thank you to my wife, Linda, and my son, Alec, for their endless support and putting up with my schedule over the years. D&Z is the place where Linda and I met in 1985, and we were married in 1990. Thank you to Hal for his leadership, friendship and his unwavering belief in the values. Thanks to the Yoh family for their steadfast commitment to the long term strength of the Company. To the D&Z Leadership Council, which it has been a pleasure and honor to work with over all of these years. To Jack Follman, my predecessor, mentor and still close friend (and the only other CFO D&Z has had in the last 50+ years). A special thanks to my great Finance and Supply Chain team – past and present – there are far too many names to mention, but they are truly the only reason I have been successful and lasted this long. And finally thank you to the D&Z community for all that you do. It has been a pleasure to work alongside you all and I am forever grateful for the opportunity.

Some may wonder, why stay at one company for so long? There are a lot of reasons, but it simply comes down to this: culture and values. They really matter. Our four values are woven into the fabric of this Company, but Integrity is the one that is key to me. Over the span of all these years, I have never seen our value of Integrity waiver, not once and under all types of circumstances. And in business, that is truly rare. 

My retirement is effective April 1st, after which I will work part time to help with the transition process through the end of the year. I leave the Finance and Supply Chain team in great hands with Kathleen King – the team has been built up around a dynamic culture of inclusion and innovation, and it is in a place now that I would consider to be the best in Company history – if I do say so myself. I’m incredibly confident the team will continue to evolve and thrive under Kathleen’s leadership.

After a long and fulfilling career, I am looking forward to entering this new chapter of my life where I can pursue my passions – I truly look at it as a time of Renewal. First and foremost, I look forward to spending more time traveling with my family. We will finish our tours of all major league baseball parks – 11 of 30 are remaining. Next, I am excited to get more involved with my three non-profit boards that support individuals with developmental and intellectual disabilities: Pride Ventures, Special Olympics New Jersey, and the Kingsway Learning Center. And lastly, I will expand my real estate activities which I very much enjoy. I formed Renewal Property Group, LLC, and if you think that’s corny, I agree.  

Day & Zimmermann is a special place, and I feel a deep sense of pride to have spent my career here. To my fellow colleagues – the future of Day & Zimmermann is bright. I believe there will be innovation, success, and growth in the days ahead. There have never been more opportunities in front of us as there are now and I’m looking forward to what’s next. 

I’ll be rooting for you all from the sidelines and I hope to see you at a Phillies game. 

With sincere and the deepest appreciation, 



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