It’s Better in Palestine: Pentecom Marks 25th-Year Milestone
Friday, February 10, 2023
As Pentecom marks its 25th-anniversary milestone, it just goes to show that a world-renowned tech business can take root in small-town values. Pentecom, founded in Palestine, Texas, in 1997 by Kathy Rainbolt, CEO, and Kim Willmott, CFO, provides technical data consulting and conversion services to domestic and international customers.
“Palestine is a great place to do business,” said Rainbolt. “In addition, there are many talented people who live here and desire to stay because it is a great place to raise a family. We are able to also capitalize on Texas’ image as a business-friendly state.”
To break down what Pentecom does in the simplest terms, think of converting paper manuals into electronic formats, but of course, their scope of work is much broader. While Pentecom’s experts have converted more than 4.3 million patent and publication pages, they have also provided technical data consulting, automation development, and publication services.
“Our company has evolved since we started 26 years ago,” said Rainbolt. “While our core service is technical data analysis and conversion, Pentecom now has six divisions to serve our customers. Our clients span five countries and represent business, industry, and the U.S. military.”
Pentecom’s 100-plus employees are located in 19 states and include nearly two dozen veterans. Of those employees, 70 work either in the Palestine office or remotely in Texas. Others work in Pentecom’s second office in Scottsboro, Alabama, which opened in 2020.
Pentecom’s experts hold 20-plus different certifications and influence international industry standards by serving on various committees. “One example would be S1000D, the worldwide specification for technical publications using a common source database,” said Rainbolt. “We led the U.S. adoption of that standard and continue to provide significant insight and expertise with three of our employees who serve as leaders on international standard committees.”
During the milestone year, Rainbolt and Willmott completed the steps needed to transition Pentecom from a limited liability company to an incorporated Employee Stock Ownership Plan (ESOP).
“You could say becoming an ESOP was our big celebration,” said Rainbolt. “We’ve increased our ownership from two to more than 100, and this new structure gives them all a direct stake in Pentecom’s success. Our business is primarily project-based, so we will continue to focus on expanding our customer list as well as customer retention. Look for some new services too, such as Pentecom University, a new training division, and expanded efforts related to quality assurance.”
“Kim and I have more than 50 years combined experience,” continued Rainbolt. “We love this company and are so proud of the work our team is doing. At some point, every entrepreneur must discuss their company’s future beyond the founding members. There were other options, of course, but this one lets us continue to be involved, secures the company’s future, and keeps our investment in Palestine. It also shows we are truly committed to the team we have built at Pentecom. Employees became owners with a vested interest in the company, and that’s good for our customers too.”
Pentecom’s talented team added to the 25th-anniversary celebration. “We held a contest for the company’s 25th anniversary T-shirt design. The winning art was printed on t-shirts given last fall to employees. We also sent a special Christmas card for staff that celebrates our history that a team member designed.”
A little over five years ago, Pentecom completed the renovation of the historic Alamo School (which more recently served as the public library) as its headquarters, giving new life to an empty Palestine building that had fallen into disrepair. Pentecom worked to maintain the building's original structure while bringing it completely up to modern building codes and accessibility standards.
“Pentecom needed room to grow, and Judge Robert Johnston suggested the old Alamo School building,” said Willmott. “We agreed it was a great space with plenty of room. Pentecom purchased the building, and the Palestine Economic Development Corporation (PEDC) gave us a grant to help with the restoration. We had a vision to integrate Palestine’s history and included some of the original brickwork, pine floors, and even one of the chalkboards. We found old rail cars honoring the city’s former rail history and used that wood to build our stairs. We also framed a few photos of the school. Indeed, it was a labor of love, and we are very proud of the final product.”
Follow Pentecom on LinkedIn and Facebook. Stay informed of job openings on their career page.
Palestine Economic Development Corporation
The mission of PEDC is to promote and facilitate responsible commercial and industrial business retention and growth that expands, diversifies, and strengthens the local tax base while enhancing local amenities and destination attractions throughout the City of Palestine.
To learn more about incentives and opportunities in Palestine, Texas, contact the PEDC at 903-729-4100 or by email. We are prepared for growth and ready to provide immediate and customized assistance. Explore our available properties here.