White Bear Consulting LLC provides digital strategy and innovation consulting and advisory services to mid-market and enterprise clients. We help business leaders align their business strategy and vision with IT strategy and solutions to achieve the organization’s goals, manage risk and reduce costs. White Bear provides an experienced, independent perspective not vested in any particular product, solution or service offering.
Keith Walbert is a senior IT executive and consultant focused on information technology innovation, strategy and architecture. He is highly regarded as an insightful, pragmatic, ethical and effective leader. His career has been focused on emerging and disruptive technologies, technology strategy and innovation, and enterprise architecture. He has held key technology leadership roles across diverse industries, including Healthcare Payer, Transportation & Logistics, and Biotherapeutics Manufacturing.
Keith received an undergraduate degree in Electrical Engineering from Penn State University. He and his wife live in the Reading, PA area in a home they designed and helped build. Keith is a member at the Greater Reading Chamber Alliance, Berks Arts Council, Berks History Center, and the Reading Public Museum. He volunteers at the annual Berks Jazz Fest and Reading Blues Fest.
To learn more about Keith, visit his LinkedIn profile – http://www.linkedin.com/in/keithjwalbert
White Bear Consulting LLC takes its name from the area in Robeson Township, Berks County, Pennsylvania near the founder’s home. Through the 18th and 19th centuries the township bustled with industry and entrepreneurship. The origin of the name is unclear, but may have originated from the Lenape Indian Tribe (also known as the Delaware Tribe) who settled in the area. In Native American folklore the appearance of an albino black bear cub was a sign of good things to come. So in that spirit, coupled with the rich entrepreneurial history, the name was adopted.
For the history buffs …
The hamlet of White Bear was named after the White Bear Inn. The area was also known as Scarlet’s Mill, named for John Scarlet who purchased 208 acres of undeveloped land in the mid-1700’s. There he and his sons built a grist and saw mill, several scythe factories and a woolen factory. The area developed into a small 18th Century industrial complex.
The White Bear Inn opened in 1810 and became the local gathering place. The Inn took its name from a painting of a bear on the sign outside. The building was originally a home built in 1730 and was known as a place where George Washington stopped. The Inn was also the first establishment in Berks County to obtain a liquor license.
Contemporary local residents fondly recall the former fine-dining restaurant called the White Bear Inn. Previously called the White Bear Tavern, the Inn was located about a mile north of the original White Bear Inn. The Inn opened in 1965, changed ownership in 1973 and closed in 1993. It has since been converted to a private residence.
Scarlet’s Mill Post Office was established in 1869, located at the back of the general store. There was also a brick yard, blacksmith shop and gun factory nearby. The former Post Office and store still stands today and is a private residence.
In 1873, Scarlet’s Mill became a stop along the Wilmington and Northern Railroad line and was known as White Bear Station. The train’s route connected Wilmington, Delaware and the Philadelphia-Pottsville line. Passenger service was discontinued in 1946.
The Scarlet family, who were Quakers, played an important role in obtaining The Robeson Quaker Meeting House located at the center of the township. The Scarlet family’s influence was not confined to industry and religion. They were ardent abolitionists and supported the Underground Railroad. Their home became the key command post in the area helping the runaway slaves as they moved from house to house and ultimately to freedom in Canada. Scarlet’s Mill was one of the most well-known stations on the Pennsylvania Underground Railroad. According to historian Wayne E. Homan, “The Scarlet Mansion at Scarlet’s Mill probably housed more [runaway slaves] over a longer period than any other Berks station stop.”