Sargento Foods Inc., Plymouth, Wis., announced the release of Treated Like Family: How an Entrepreneur and His ‘Employee Family’ Built Sargento, a Billion-Dollar Cheese Company. The biography tells the story of how Leonard Gentine built Sargento, a billion-dollar cheese company and household name, using family values, hard work and compassion. The book showcases three generations of Gentines, who turned a Wisconsin-based business into a thriving company by redefining the meaning of "family business."

Told from the viewpoint of the Gentine family and written by 29-year Sargento employee Tom Faley, the biography places the reader in Leonard Gentine's shoes as he advances from young man to old age and discovers life's foundational lessons, persevering no matter the obstacle, Sargento said. Along the way, he endures outstanding debts, vast disappointments and a collection of small businesses. From these experiences, he formed his own simple philosophy: "Hire good people and treat them like family."           

"The story of how the Gentines ideated, persevered, stumbled occasionally and ultimately architected and created one of America's most beloved brands is impressive,” said Mitch Hersh, national director of sales for Sargento. “While the recipe for cheese starts with a 'culture,' it is, in fact, an adherence to a culture of dedication, appreciation for the contributions of others coupled with leadership and at times a little good luck that build a $1 billion brand enjoyed by millions of consumers."

The book is available through Amazon and Barnes & Noble.