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Name and title: Franklin A. Miles Jr., vice president, general counsel and secretary Age: 47 Beyond chocolate: When Milton S. Hershey died in 1945, he left behind an exceptional corporate and charitable legacy. With his patented process for making milk chocolate, Hershey built Hershey Chocolate Co. (now Hershey Foods) into America’s best-known candy maker, and created the modern, comfortable community of Hershey, Pa., for his workers. The profits from his business allowed the childless chocolatier to establish the Milton Hershey School, the most well-endowed orphanage in America. The school is the sole beneficiary of the $5.5 billion Hershey Trust, which still owns a controlling stake in Hershey Foods and 100% interest in Hershey Entertainment & Resorts Co. (HERCO), the successor to Hershey’s holding company for his nonchocolate properties. “We have this truly unique legacy from Mr. Hershey that really does come into play,” said HERCO General Counsel Frank Miles. “In all that we do, we have to consider our impact on the community and on the legacy itself.” Long before Miles began representing his current employer as a private attorney in the 1980s, HERCO had sold off most of its “company town” holdings, including Hershey’s hospital, utilities, department store, bakery, dairy and cemetery. However, HERCO still rules the region’s hospitality industry. The company’s flagship property is HersheyPark, a former picnic area for Hershey employees that is now a 60-attraction amusement park. HERCO also owns the 234-room Hershey Hotel; the 665-room Hershey Lodge and Convention Center; the Hershey Bears minor league hockey team; Hershey’s zoo, four-course golf club, outdoor sports stadium and indoor arena; and Dutch Wonderland, a nearby amusement park for younger children. HERCO employs about 1,500 full-time employees and another 4,500 seasonal and part-time workers in the summer. The privately held company does not report annual revenues. Candy bar: Miles supervises two other in-house counsel, Garrett Gallia, a five-year HERCO veteran and newly hired Jennifer Kramer, a 2003 graduate of Widener University School of Law. Miles’ portfolio includes oversight of litigation, contracts, real estate matters, government relations and corporate dealings with owner Hershey Trust and sister company Hershey Foods. He also supervises HERCO’s five-person corporate communications staff. Trouble in chocolate town: The entertainment company tries to create an enjoyable experience for its customers, said Miles, an attitude that carries over to the workplace: “We take our work seriously, but we really do have an ethos here to have fun.” His job perks include a family pass to HersheyPark and free tickets for concerts and Hershey Bears games. However, all is not sweetness and light in Chocolate Land. On Sept. 4, the Milton Hershey School Alumni Association filed petition in Dauphin County state court against the Hershey Trust and the Pennsylvania attorney general’s office, alleging gross mismanagement of the school and trust fund assets. The suit challenged the AG’s recent agreement to allow HERCO’s CEO to sit on the Hershey Trust board. Although HERCO was not named in the suit, many of the alumni’s complaints center on the company’s cozy relationship with Hershey Trust, said alumni association lawyer Ric Fouad. “HERCO is essentially a growth-oriented tourist and amusement company that competes directly with the children’s home for land and cash resources,” said Fouad, citing the trust’s financial bailout of the company in the 1970s, HERCO’s more recent use of school property for commercial development in Hershey and an ongoing failure to devote more of the trust fund to increase enrollment and improve conditions at the school. On Nov. 19, the court dismissed the alumni’s lawsuit on standing grounds. Miles disputes the suit’s substance, especially claims that HERCO is betraying the legacy of Milton Hershey. HERCO’s involvement with the trust, including membership on its board, “carries out Mr. Hershey’s intent that his enterprises work cooperatively,” said Miles, arguing that a single seat on the 11-member board does not allow HERCO to dictate the trust’s decisions. Litigation: HERCO has a relatively light litigation load, said Miles. He manages a docket of about 70 active claims and cases, he said, most of which are routine personal injury, employment or commercial matters. Most cases are either settled or dismissed before trial, with only five or six cases tried to a verdict each year, said Miles. “We will settle cases where we feel we have some responsibility if the settlement amount bears a reasonable relationship to the claim,” he said. All of HERCO’s litigation is referred to outside counsel, with in-house lawyers participating actively in document drafting and witness preparation. Miles said that he is value-driven rather than detail-oriented in reviewing legal bills. “I don’t sit there and say, ‘Gee, did that phone call really take 20 minutes?’ ” he said. “ I look at the result and the overall cost. As long as there’s a fair relationship between the two, I’m good with that.” Principal outside counsel: McNees Wallace & Nurick of Harrisburg, Pa., handles contracting, finance and labor matters, along with intellectual property and personal injury and construction litigation. Stevens & Lee deals with general corporate matters, major transactions, environmental issues and real estate, tax and commercial litigation. Miles also calls on Philadelphia’s Montgomery, McCracken, Walker & Rhoads for employee benefit work and Holston & Crisci of Harrisburg for liquor-license matters. Route to the top: The Camp Hill, Pa., native graduated from Bucknell University in 1978 with a double major in political science and history. After receiving a law degree from the George Washington University Law School in 1981, Miles returned home to work for McNees Wallace & Nurick, concentrating first in labor law and litigation, and then establishing the firm’s intellectual property practice. He was hired as HERCO’s GC in January 2000. Personal: Frank and Diana Miles have been married since 1980, and are raising two children: Allison, 17, and Ben, 15. Two years ago, they bought a 40-acre horse farm in Etters, Pa. Last book and movie: Harry Potter and the Order of the Phoenix, by J. K. Rowling, and Seabiscuit.

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