The Car and Truck Fleet and Leasing Management Magazine

The Automotive Fleet Hall of Fame

Founding Inductee (2008)2008 2009 2010

Sam Lee

Lee Fleet Management

founding inductee

The late Sam Lee began his automotive career at Chevrolet dealerships in New York and Chicago. In 1948, he organized Lee Fleet Management, Inc., in Chicago, later moving the operation to Cleveland where he purchased a Ford dealership, which became one of the largest fleet and equipment leasing firms in the nation. Acting as a consultant to address concerns of fleet operations, he also helped lease companies improve their operations and assisted car dealers in the organization of their lease departments. Following the sale of his own companies, Lee organized the Fleetway System in California, installing lease departments in eight western states. This program was eventually merged into the Chevway system, organized by Lee for Chevrolet. He was the editor and publisher of Lease News, and wrote three books: Introduction to Leasing, Automotive Transportation in Industry, and Fleet and Lease Manager's Handbook. From 1972-1979, he was VP of marketing for First Leasing Corp. He was an honorary NAFA member, as well as a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers (SAE) and California Vehicle Leasing Association (now the National Vehicle Leasing Association). Lee passed away in 1985.

 

 

Helen Bland

Hallmark

founding inductee

In 1942, Helen Bland, former fleet manager for Hallmark, Inc., left her teaching job in Eldorado Springs, Mo., and moved to Kansas City, Mo., to begin a business career that spanned 45 years. After spending 20 years in Hallmark's order department, Bland requested a transfer to the newly formed fleet department.

She started as the assistant to the fleet manager, but the company began changing fleet managers every other year. After interviewing the third candidate for the fleet manager job, Bland asked the division director if she could take on the role.

"Helen succeeded in a mainly male-dominated field by considering herself an equal and not expecting any special treatment," recalled Debbie Mize, who assumed the Hallmark fleet manager position following Bland's retirement in 1987. "It was probably harder than normal in the beginning, but she gained respect and knowledge from hard work and treating everyone equal."

Mize also recalled, "Helen was always very open in her communication and very fair and consistent in all she did. Helen was the first female president of NAFA [National Association of Fleet Administrators] and loved the time she served on the NAFA board, especially the contact with so many other great fleet professionals serving our industry."

 

Howard Cook

Ford Motor Co.

founding inductee

The late Howard Cook began his lengthy career with the Ford Motor Co. in 1926 and attended the Henry Ford Trade School in Dearborn, MI. Upon graduating in 1931, Cook worked as an apprentice and student mechanic in Highland Park. After his apprenticeship, Cook held a number of positions with Ford Motor Co., such as service traveler, zone manager, sales representative, and project engineer.

Cook transferred to Washing, DC, in 1945 as a commercial supervisor. Shortly after, he became sales manager and in that same year, he was promoted to assistant district manager. In 1948, he was named district sales manager of the Ford Division, and in 1954 he became sales department manager. Nine years later, Cook was promoted to fleet and leasing sales manager, a position he held until his retirement in 1969.

 

Eddie Dame

Avis Leasing

founding inductee

Dame worked for Avis Rent-A-Car as the senior vice president and general manager of the worldwide car leasing division, retiring in 1986 after 40 years with the company. In 1948, Dame started out in the automotive industry as a garage serviceman for Dick Robie, a Hertz licensee in Boston. Then in 1952, Robie bought the Avis system from Warren Avis and moved the company’s headquarters to Boston. During his long-term employment with Avis, Dame held a number of positions such as reservation agent, rental agent, assistant to the general manager, car leasing salesman, and car leasing operations manager. When he retired in 1986, his title was senior vice president and general manager of the car leasing division, a position he held for 20 years. Dame passed away Aug. 19, 2004 of Alzheimer’s disease. He was 76.

 

Don Fenton

Piemonte Fleet

founding inductee

Fenton began his fleet sales career at Nickey Chevrolet in Chicago in 1957 as a fleet sales executive. In 1967, he joined Long Chevrolet as director of fleet sales operations. He left Long Chevrolet in 1981 and went to work for Faul Fleet Group in 1982 where he served as president for eight years. In 1990-1991, Fenton worked for Bobit Publishing as an advertising sales executive, representing AF in the Midwest and Eastern U.S. In 1991, he joined Al Piemonte National Fleet as vice president of sales and marketing. Fenton was also a founder of the Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA) and served as its third president. He died Aug. 30, 2003, in a single-vehicle traffic accident while swerving to avoid hitting an animal in the Seattle area. He was 67.

 

Jim Frank

Wheels Inc.

founding inductee

When Frank, president and CEO of Wheels Inc., first joined the company in 1967, his mentor in the car leasing business was his father Zollie Frank who founded Wheels Inc. in 1939 with his brother-in-law Armund Schoen. Jim began in the business selling cars on the retail side. When he was promoted to Wheels president in 1974, he said, “My personal objective is to keep the company true to the fundamental goals we have success-fully established over the past 35 years. We don’t necessarily want to be the biggest, but we want to be the best company in the industry. We emphasize quality and sensitivity to our clients’ needs — to me, those are our most important goals.” That motto still holds true today. Wheels remains one of the top four largest privately-held automobile and truck leasing companies in the United States. Frank also served as president of the American Automotive Leasing Association (AALA).

 

Zollie Frank

Wheels Inc.

founding inductee

In 1939, Zollie Frank, a young Chicago automobile dealer, discovered the solution to a large Chicago pharmaceutical company’s problem of losing its vehicles when salesmen left the company: Frank would lease the vehicles to the company, charging them only for the use of the cars and not the cars themselves. From this idea, he started Wheels Inc. (originally Four Wheels) with his brother-in-law Armund Schoen, which now includes 22 companies. Frank passed away Dec. 29, 1990 at 83 years old. His son, Jim, is president of Wheels Inc., and his son Chuck, handles the family’s dealership business, the Z Frank Auto Dealership Group.

 

George Frink

GM/Chevrolet

founding inductee

Frink joined General Motors in 1966 to help the automaker boost its corporate fleet activity through the GM Fleet Section. In 1974, he was named director of fleet sales at the Buick division and in 1976 was promoted to director of marketing for the division. In 1978, Frink succeeded Robert Berg and was promoted to Chevrolet Division director of fleet sales. In 1992, when GM consolidated its divisional fleet operations, he was named director of the newly created GM North American Operations (NAO) Consolidated Fleet Operations. Frink worked in the fleet business for 30 years, retiring from GM in August, 1996. After retiring from GM, Frink relocated to Arizona where he lived until three years ago before returning to Rochester, Mich. He passed away from cancer Oct. 25, 2007. He was 70.

 

Bud Grossman

Gelco

founding inductee

Grossman was co-founder of General Leasing Company (later named Gelco) and past president of the American Automotive Leasing Association (AALA). Born in Minneapolis, Grossman graduated with a B.A. from the University of Minnesota in 1941. From 1942-1945, he served as a pilot in the Army Air Corps, testing planes and teaching instrument flying. Returning to Minneapolis after World War II, Grossman went to work in the family retail automobile business, and with his brother, Harold Grossman, operated a chain of car dealerships for the next 32 years. The Grossmans founded General Leasing Company in 1956, which eventually became Gelco Corp., one of the largest transportation leasing companies in the world. The company was sold in 1987 to GE Capital. In addition, Grossman was also a co-founder and chairman of the board of Dyco Petroleum Corp. He passed away Jan. 11, 2010 from Alzheimer’s disease. He was 88.

 

 

 

Joe Holman

ARI/Holman

founding inductee

Holman began his automotive career in 1950 after graduating from Princeton University. Founded in 1924 by Steward Holman, Joe’s father, Holman Enterprises currently has 15 dealerships located in South New Jersey and Florida, one remanufacturing operation, one body installation company, and ARI Inc. — a national leasing company with more than 17 locations in the U.S. and Canada. At the request of a major manufacturer, the Holmans formed ARI (formerly Automotive Rentals Inc.), and have continued actively in the national leasing business since its founding in 1948. ARI now manages the fleet needs of customers throughout the United States, Canada, Puerto Rico, and the Carribean. Holman was 1990 candidate for the Time Magazine quality dealer award. He is actively involved in national, county, and local automobile dealers associations. He has served on the Lincoln Mercury dealer council, and his dealership honors include Ford’s Vice President’s 100 Club, Ford’s Distinguished Achievement Award, and the Automotive Hall of Fame Distinguished Service Citation.

 

Harley Howell

PHH

founding inductee

While working at Chicago-based Butler Brothers, Howell (one of the founders of Peterson, Howell & Heather) helped conceive the idea for a vehicle management plan to solve the problem of providing cars to sales and service personnel, along with Duane Peterson and Richard Heather. In September 1945, Howell met with his two associates, who had moved to Baltimore, to discuss the idea of offering their own “car plan” to organizations whose employees used cars on company business. The three launched Peterson, Howell & Heather on April 1, 1946, offering complete management and leasing services for companies operating automobile fleets. During their first year in business, they found that companies were reluctant to tie up capital in cars. In response, the company developed the first actual cost, no risk, no premium “finance lease” for corporate automobile fleet users, ultimately revolutionizing the leasing industry. Howell retired in 1973, and following a long bout with cancer, passed away in 1979.

 

Jack Lamb, Exxon

founding inductee

Having solely an automotive focus in his business career enabled Lamb to develop years of fleet expertise. The former fleet manager for the Houston-based Exxon Company USA, sums up his experience saying, “I didn’t deal with anything that didn’t have plates and rolled down the highway. Fleet is the only business I’ve been in and I sure had lots of fun doing it.”


Lamb first got his fleet feet wet working for ARI, Inc. Between 1963 and 1967, Lamb was in the interesting position of being an ARI employee on contract to Humble Oil. His first challenge was to help organize a captive leasing company. By serving as supervisor of operations for the leasing company, Lamb’s broad responsibilities gained him what he considers “his basic foot-hold in the automotive business, combining an administrative experience with new and used-car purchasing skills.”


In the mid-‘70s, the company changed its name to Exxon as part of its move toward establishing an international marketing identification. Lamb retired from Exxon in July 1986.

 

Milo Matick

Piemonte Fleet

founding inductee

Matick was vice president of fleet for Piemonte National Fleet in Melrose Park, Ill, He was one of a handful of the true pioneers in fleet sales who was still working in the industry. He managed fleet sales for the Al Piemonte dealerships for the past 32 years and prior to that worked in the daily rental and fleet leasing industries.
His career in the automotive industry began with his employment with an auto parts retail store in the Los Angeles area. From there, he went to work as a retail lease salesman for AAA Leasing and left the company as used car manager to work for Avis Car Leasing and then Grand Rent-A-Car, an Avis franchise in Los Angeles as its fleet manager. During this time, Matick helped pioneer the sale of daily rental repurchase units through dealerships. After accepting a position with Hertz as fleet and distribution manager, he and his family relocated to Chicago, IL. In 1971, Matick joined the Al Piemonte dealerships as fleet sales manager, where he remained for 32 years until his death. While at the Al Piemonte fleet department (later renamed Piemonte National Fleet in 1996), Matick ultimately rose to the position of vice president of fleet. During his 32 years at Al Piemonte, he was instrumental in building and maintaining one of the most sophisticated, full-service fleet sales departments in the industry. He was the recipient of Ford Motor Co.’s highest level of sales recognition award, along with other industry awards. Matick was also very involved with the Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA) and served as president of the organization. He passed away on Aug. 6, 2003, of a massive heart attack. He was 65.

 

Emerson Parker

Hartford Fire Insurance

founding inductee

Parker established the basic meethods and programs of the industry and played a vital role in establishing fleet management as a recognized profession.  He pioneered the concept of annual fleet replacement.

 

S. Lester Landau

Picker Z-Ray

founding inductee

Landau was one of the founding members of the National Association of Fleet Administrators (NAFA) in 1957 while working as the budget director for Picker X-Ray in White Plains, N.Y. During his tenure as budget director, Landau assumed responsibility for the management of the company’s fleet. He worked at Picker X-Ray from 1949-1974. Landau was elected the NAFA Foundation’s first president in 1976 through 1986. In addition, he served as NAFA’s treasurer for the first 17 years.


During his years with the NAFA Foundation, Landau spearheaded an effort to have fleet management become part of the curriculum at major universities. He established strong ties with educational institutions, such as the schools of business at Columbia University, University of Pennsylvania, Stanford University, University of Michigan, and the University of Pittsburgh. He worked closely with the administrators and faculty of the Wharton School of the University of Pennsylvania to create the Wharton Certified Automotive Fleet Manager program. NAFA honored Landau for his service with Honorary Lifetime Membership and the Distinguished Service Award, the association’s highest honor. After leaving Picker X-Ray, Landau worked for English Electric from 1974-1979 in the finance department.

He retired in 1979 to start an independent real estate consulting company, where he worked until just prior to his death. The NAFA Board of Trustees unanimously passed a resolution memorializing many of Landau’s contributions to the fleet management profession over the years. He passed away on Sept. 28, 2004 in Philadelphia.

 

Hubert Ryan

Hertz Leasing

founding inductee

In leasing lore, Ryan and the Hertz Corp. are inextricably intertwined. In 1934, he ventured into the vehicle leasing business as an office boy with a truck leasing company called Metropolitan Distributors. In 1955, he joined Hertz when they bought Robinson Auto Rental, a Philadelphia car leasing company. The operation was then moved to Chicago where Ryan began nearly two decades as vice president and general manager of the Hertz Car Leasing Division.


When Ryan first arrived in Chicago with a fleet of 2,000 cars which Hertz acquired from Robinson Auto Rental, his orders were to expand the fleet as quickly as possible. At that time, the sales force consisted of two people who covered the U.S.


By 1973, at the time of Ryan’s retirement from Hertz, the sales force had grown to 35 people and the fleet had grown to over 30,000 units. Ryan was a cofounder of AALA.

 

Armund Schoen

Wheels Inc.

founding inductee

Armund Schoen, Wheels Inc. (originally Four Wheels) co-founded and Zollie Frank's brother-in-law, was a key player in keeping the company a "family operator." Besides the fact that Schoen brought sales experience and marketing savvy to the company that gave birth to the automotive fleet leasing industry in Chicago in 1939, his partnership with Frank helped make Wheels a more personal, dedicated company.

 

Bob Soell 

Suntrup Ford City

founding inductee 2008

From 1989 to 1999, working for Kribs Ford City in St. Louis, Soell delivered 11,815 new cars and trucks, of which 1,212 were out of stock. In addition, he disposed of more than 8,000 used cars. In October 2000, Suntrup Ford bought Kribs Ford City. Soell has performed courtesy deliveries for 22 years. Previously, he sold vehicles to national companies full-time for 35 years. A charter member of the Automotive Fleet and Leasing Association (AFLA), Soell still attends meetings whenever his courtesy-delivery schedule allows. 

 

Ed Stanley

Oldsmobile Div.

founding inductee 2008

Stanley had a career wtih Oldsmobile from 1964 to 1972. He was the first ever manager of national fleet sales for the Oldsmobile Division.

 

George Weimer

Contel/Hertz

founding inductee

Since 1957, Weimer served with Hertz Corp.’s leasing operations, leaving as vice president – sales in 1973 to become vice president of U.S. Fleet Leasing. In 1974, he joined Contel Service Corp. of Atlanta, as director of transportation services. In 1982, Weimer fully implemented the concept in 1982 of replacing vans with mini-pickup trucks with caps, which resulted in fuel savings of 6 million gallons annually. The installation of standardized cab/chassis for aerial trucks resulted in an additional annual fuel savings of 1.5 million gallons. Weimer is also responsible for the installation of a database computer program allowing Contel to provide manufacturers with information on problem components. Weimer’s development of innovate financing arrangements with major vehicle lessors brought savings to his company of $1.5 million over a five-year period, and his development of a used-vehicle marketing program results in an annual refund of over $2 million over the book value of sold used units. A past president of AFLA and present chairman of the association’s Audit Committee, Weimer has also been a NAFA member since 1961, chairman of the Atlanta Chapter, a seminar leader at various NAFA functions, and a member on Ford’s Fleet Advisory Panel.

 

Emil Ames

2008 inductee

Ames began his automotive industry career as service manager for a Packard Dealership in New York City. He joined Universal CIT Credit Corp. in the early 1940s, there until retiring in 1963. He served as manager of the car control department, overseeing repossession sales and a 2,200-vehicle company-owned car fleet

From the early days of fleet, Ames was involved in industry groups. He was a member of the Round Table Group, the forerunner of the National Association of Fleet Administrators (now NAFA Fleet Management Association). Representing fleet managers from various commercial entities and public utilities, primarily in the Northeast, the Group met monthly to discuss issues and factors affecting early corporate fleet operations and increased fleet exposure.

A founding NAFA member — loaning $5 to start the treasury in 1957 — Ames was actively involved in the organization throughout his career. He served as 1960-1961 NAFA president and was instrumental in hiring Howard DaSilva for the organization's first legal counsel. Ames passed away in the late 1960s

 
 

Gene Arbaugh

PHH

2008 inductee

Arbaugh was hired by Peterson, Howell & Heather (now PHH Arval) in 1964 as manager of the Title and Tax Department. After serving in several management positions, he was named vice president of legal services in 1971 and appointed senior vice president, truck and equipment programs in 1974.


Arbaugh became senior vice president of the Car Division in 1976 and was promoted to executive vice
president in 1978. Under Arbaugh’s leadership,  Peterson, Howell & Heather continued its role as a fleet management industry innovator. While serving as senior vice president, he was responsible for expanding truck and equipment programs. As president of Peterson, Howell & Heather, he managed the acquisition of Avis
Leasing’s domestic fleet operation. In 1987, Arbaugh was named vice president of PHH Corp. corporate marketing.

 

Ray Breault

2008 inductee

Breault began his fleet career in 1959 at Hoffmann La Roche (now Roche) in Nutley, N.J. A Round Table Group member, Breault joined NAFA in 1960 and remains active today. He served at all New York chapter levels and on the National overning Board, where he held all positions except treasurer, including president from 1977-1979. An affiliate member of four Eastern Region chapters, Breault received the Outstanding Chapter Service award in 2004.

In 1977, Breault joined Revlon Cosmetics Inc. as national director of fleet operations. After retiring from Revlon in 1990, he joined Rental Concepts Inc. (now Fleet Response) as regional sales manager, He provided an innovative car rental program to corporate fleets in the Northeast territory. Officially retiring in 1998, he returned to Fleet Response as a part-time Northeast sales service representative, a position he still holds.

 

Al Cavalli

2008 inductee

Cavalli's fleet industry career began in 1948 at Universal CIT Credit Corp. (UCIT) working with mentor Emil Ames. He spent several years at UCIT, becoming VP client relations and director, retiring in 1981. He joined Avis Car Leasing as manager of sales and service, retiring in 1989.

His several industry "firsts" include a national account repair and maintenance program, safe driving manual, and a computerized replacement schedule program. Cavalli was a Round Table Group member and served as 1963-1965 NAFA New York chapter chairman and NAFA president 1969-1971. He initiated the group's Fleet Safety Manual, Fleet Manager's Manual, and established a uniform Chapter Code of Regulations. His honors include NAFA's honorary member award and Distinguished Service Award, and the 1968 Automotive Fleet Fleet Manager of the Year award. Cavalli serves as field editor for Automotive Fleet.

 

Dick Heather

2008 inductee

Dick Heather was a founder of Peterson, Howell & Heather (currently PHH Arval) in 1946. The company's three founding partners had worked together at Butler Brothers, a Chicago-based national wholesaler of general merchandise, prior to WWII. Heather served in the Navy during the war and following his discharge, decided to join Harley Howell and Duane Peterson in their proposed venture to find a better way for companies to manage their sales fleets. Heather brought a wealth of sales and marketing savvy to the new company. He was instrumental selling this new concept and helping the idea of fleet management take root within corporate offices. He served as PHH's chairman of the Board from 1962-1971, and under his leadership, the company expanded and diversified the nature and scope of PHH's outsourced services.

 

Jack Kolb

2008 inductee

An accounting and MBA graduate of Drexel University, Kolb worked for the university for 11 years, the final four as controller. He joined Holman Enterprises in 1950 as a dealer alesman and subsequently joined the Holman subsidiary, Automotive Rentals, Inc., (now Automotive Resources International, ARI). From 1957-1970, Kolb was ARI executive VP and general manager.

Before his retirement in 2001, he also served as Holman vice chairman of the board and ARI president, director, and board chairman.

He is actively involved in various organizations, including United Way and Boy Scouts of America, serving as chairman of the Burlington County Council. Kolb received the Scouts'Silver Beaver Award. He is also a past chairman and past president of the American Automobile Leasing Association (AALA). In 1996, Kolb was named one of Drexel University's 100 Outstanding Alumni.

 

Arno Neuber

2008 inductee

Born in 1909 in Camden, N.J., Neuber began an automotive industry career with Rice & Holman Ford in 1950 as a sales representative. He transferred to Automotive Rentals, Inc., (now Automotive Resources International, ARI) as a sales manager. In 1970, he succeeded James Deasy as president and CEO of ARI. Neuber also served as vice chairman of ARI's parent company, Holman Enterprises and ARI chairman of the board. Following his retirement in 1977, he remained a director of ARI and Holman Enterprises.

An AALA president and board chairman, Neuber was also a director of the Highway Users Federation and member of the National Defense Executive Reserve Board. His philanthropic activities included board membership of both the Boy Scouts (Burlington County Chapter), and Big Brothers, Big Sisters of America.

 

Don Rappeport

2008 inductee

A Chicago native and graduate of the University of Illinois, Rappeport, is a WWII Navy veteran. In 1965, after years in automotive sales and working for Greyhound, Rappeport, recognized the potential of the fleet leasing and anagement industry and founded the Donlen Corp. with partner Leonard Vine. Rappeport directed company sales, while Vine oversaw day-to-day operations. Throughout Rappeport's tenure at Donlen and as president, he remained heavily involved in company sales. Retirement was a gradual process, and today he serves as chairman of the board.

An enthusiastic Chicago Cubs fan, Rappeport enjoys watching his home team play whenever possible. He is also involved with several philanthropic organizations, including the American Cancer Foundation, the American Diabetes Foundation, and the Jewish United Fund.

 

John Rock

2008 inductee

Rock, former fleet director, divisional general manager, and vice president of General Motors, began his career with GM in 1960 as a district manager trainee with Buick. Upon graduating from the University of Minnesota in 1959 with a degree in psychology, Rock's father, a Chevrolet/Oldsmobile dealer convinced him to work with GM. Rock was fleet director for Buick Motor Division.

From 1970-1973, Rock was director, fleet and government sales for the GM Fleet Section. In 1979, he worked in Australia as an executive director of marketing for Holden's Automotive Limited, a GM business unit.

Rock relocated to Detroit to manage the GMC Truck Division. In 1991, Rock was named a GM vice president, a position he held until his retirement in 1997. His philanthropic activities included Senior Meals Program in Hot Springs, S.D. Rock passed away from cancer November 2007 at 71.

 

Bob Betagole

Mike Albert Vehicle Fleet Management

2009 inductee

CEO and founder of Mike Albert Vehicle Fleet Management, Betagole began his fleet career in 1956. Under his leadership, the company has become one of the top 10 fleet lessors in the U.S., with more than 25,000 fleet units on lease in the U.S., Puerto Rico, and Canada.

 

John Blessing

McCullagh Leasing

2009 inductee

Now deceased, former president of McCullagh Leasing, Blessing served as president and chairman of the American Automotive Leasing Association (AALA), testifying in Washington, D.C. during 1985 hearings on the Federal Trade Commission's Used Car Rule. He was also active in NAFA Fleet Management Association and AFLA. Blessing's fleet career spanned 1969-1987.

 

Ed Bobit

Bobit Business Media

Automotive Fleet 

2009 inductee

Remaining active in the fleet industry for more than 50 years, Bobit is chairman and founder of Bobit Business Media (BBM), Automotive Fleet editor, and a founding AFLA member. Established in 1961, BBM now produces more than 20 publications, seven targeted specifically to the fleet industry.

 

Stan Chason

GELCO

2009 inductee

In a career that began in 1963 and lasted 21 years, Chason's Gelco service included chairman, CEO and executive VP of the fleet management services division. The company was acquired later by GE Capital Fleet Services. Chason also served as AALA chairman. Chason retired from Gelco.

 

Dennis LaLiberty

Wheels Inc.

2009 inductee

LaLiberty began his 44-year fleet career as a Wheels trainee after college, moving up in company hierarchy to the VP of international marketing post in 1992. He retired from Wheels Inc.

 

Pat Starr

Consolidated Service Corp.

2009 inductee

Former chairman of Consolidated Service Corp. (CSC), Starr is five-decade fleet veteran. He established the industry's first national tire account, programs for glass repair/replacement, and replacement rentals. Building CSC into the industry's largest nonlessor fleet services company, Starr retired when CSC was acquired by LeasePlan.

 

Duane Peterson

PHH

2009 inductee

One of three founders and former chairman of Peterson, Howell & Heather (PHH), Peterson's industry career spanned fleet's early years, 1946-1962. He pursued partnership creation and a new business model and developed and promoted the finance lease. He passed away in 1962.

 

Jim Rallo

PHH

2009 inductee

A former PHH senior VP at PHH, Rallo worked more than 38 years in the fleet industry. He testified on behalf of AALA and PHH in Washington, D.C., lobbying legislators in regard to the commercial fleet industry. Although officially retired since last spring, Rallo continues to provide marketing guidance and support to AFLA.

 

Helen Smorgans

Johnson & Johnson

2009 inductee

In a 24-year fleet career that began in 1964, Smorgans managed fleets for Johnson & Johnson corporate and 10 other J&J companies. She was co-founder of the NAFA New Jersey chapter and also served on the organization's National Board of Governors. She retired from Johnson & Johnson.

 

Mike Antich

Automotive Fleet
Editor/Associate Publisher

Dates in Fleet: 1985-Present

2010 inductee

Antich has been heavily involved in the fleet industry for more than 25 years, writing and editing more than 5,000 articles on fleet management, in addition to his active membership in a number of industry associations, including the Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA), NAFA Fleet Management Association (NAFA), and the International Automotive Remarketers Alliance (IARA). Antich is a past AFLA president, a 15-year member of the NAFA Foundation Board of Directors, long-time member of the NAFA Affiliates Committee, and was a member of the committee that helped create the Affiliates position on the NAFA Board of Trustees. He was chairman of the IARA industry task force that developed the first-ever Certified Automotive Remarketers (CAR) program and has served 10 years on the IARA Board of Directors, in addition to being an officer and secretary.

 

George Argueta

Fleet Manager, Celanese Corp.
Salex/CCM
Regional Mktg. Mgr.
Dates in Fleet: 1965-Present

2010 inductee

As one of the first NAFA Affiliate trustees, Argueta has been actively involved with the association and achieved NAFA Lifetime Honorary Membership in 2001. He was appointed to regional marketing manager for Corporate Claims Management (CCM) in 2001. Previously, he spent 20 years as a fleet manager and also served as president of Salex Fleet Services.

 

Hal Barton

Chrysler Corp.
GMAC

Lincoln-Mercury Division
General Mgr. of Fleet Operations (Retired)
Dates in Fleet: 1950-1992

2010 inductee

Barton held sales, finance, and fleet executive positions with GMAC, Ford, and Chrysler. At Chrysler and Lincoln-Mercury Division, he was responsible for all fleet, leasing, and rental market sales and marketing activities.

 

Helene Kamon

Wendy's/AmeriFleet Transportation
Dates in Fleet: 1970-Present

2010 inductee

Kamon began her industry career in 1970 working for Dealers CadiLease, later purchased by Union Leasing. She went on to manage Wendy's fleet for 11 years starting with 350 vehicles, which grew to 2,000 in the U.S. and Canada by the time she left. Before joining AmeriFleet in her current position as vice president of sales, Kamon ran her own driveaway company for seven years. An active figure in the fleet industry, Kamon was the first female president of AFLA (1988-1989) and is a NAFA Affiliate.

 

Don Kreft

LeasePlan USA
President/CEO (Retired)
Co-owner, Transport Solutions
Dates in Fleet: 1965-Present

2010 inductee

Kreft, a sales and management executive in the fleet management industry since 1965, served as president/CEO of LeasePlan USA from 1986 through 2000. During his tenure, LeasePlan grew from 1,100 vehicles to more than 125,000. Kreft also negotiated the acquisition of Consolidated Service Corp., and oversaw implementation of EDI and ePlan. He also served LeasePlan in a global capacity as an SVP of LeasePlan Corp., and as a director of LeasePlan International. Kreft was also a board member of the American Automotive Leasing Association (AALA) and the Automotive Fleet and Leasing Association (AFLA). Currently, he is an owner of Transport Solutions of America (TSOA), heading up the company's sales and marketing efforts as principal and chief marketing officer.

 

Sam Penn

PHH
Executive VP (Retired)

Dates in Fleet: 1969-1990

2010 inductee

Penn contributed significantly to the growth of fuel and vehicle management services and PHH's domestic vehicle management services. He joined Peterson, Howell & Heather (PHH) in 1969 as a regional buying manager, moved up to vice president of sales and service, and became president in 1974. In 1978, he was appointed to senior vice president of PHH Group (now PHH) and president of the domestic vehicle management operations. Penn was named executive vice president of PHH Group in 1981. He handled executive responsibilities for PHH facilities management business from 1987 until his retirement in 1990.

 

Wayne Smolda

CEI
Founder/CEO

Dates in Fleet: 1980-Present

2010 inductee

In 1983, Smolda founded CEI, today the largest independent accident management company, serving more than 400 clients with over 450,000 vehicles. He developed DriverCare.com in 2002 and launched CEI Europe in 2003. Smolda was a member of the Board of Directors of Providence Washington Insurance Company (1998-2006), is currently a member of the Board of Directors of Arbitration Forums, Inc., and has been a member of the NAFA Fleet Management Association since 1983.

 

Jack Taylor

Enterprise Holdings
Founder of Enterprise Rent-A-Car

Dates in Fleet: 50+ years

2010 inductee

After serving as an F6F Hellcat fighter pilot aboard the USS Essex and USS Enterprise during World War II, Taylor founded Executive Leasing in 1957 with just seven cars in the lower level of a Cadillac distributorship. In 1969, Taylor named the company Enterprise Leasing in honor of the aircraft carrier in which he served and renamed it Enterprise Rent-A-Car in 1989. After the Alamo Rent A Car and National Car Rental brands were acquired in 2007, the Taylor family launched a new corporate identity - Enterprise Holdings - for its growing portfolio of transportation businesses, which includes a worldwide network of more than 7,600 airport and neighborhood locations as well as car leasing, vanpooling, car sharing, and hourly rental programs. Through its regional subsidiaries, Enterprise Holdings today operates more than 1 million cars and trucks

 

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