Automotive Fleet magazine and the Automotive Fleet & Leasing Association (AFLA) are proud to announce the 2022 nominees for the Fleet Hall of Fame.
These nominees all have over 10 years of industry experience and through the years have made an indelible mark within the fleet management industry. Honorees inducted into the Hall of Fame will be announced at the 2022 AFLA conference, which will be hosted October 10-13 in Tucson, Arizona. Inductions into the Hall of Fame happen once a year. Entering the Hall of Fame recognizes industry leaders and pioneers who have contributed significantly to the commercial fleet management profession. Inductees are selected by their peers through an online ballot available on Automotive-Fleet.com.
The Fleet Hall of Fame is sponsored by AFLA.
In no particular order, the nominees are:
- FMC; USFL; Fleet Management Weekly
- Years in fleet: 35+
Janice Sutton has the distinction of being one of the women pioneers in fleet management. She was the first woman to be named to a regional sales manager position at an FMC. She also had a very productive career with USFL. Sutton also has the distinction of being the first woman publisher of a fleet publication – Fleet Management Weekly.
For more than 35 years, she has contributed to the growth and betterment of the fleet industry. After starting her career at Hertz, Sutton held customer-facing positions at Wheels and US Fleet Leasing. She earned a reputation within those respective businesses for her accomplishments and within the industry for her teams’ customer excellence.
Since 2008 when she started publishing Fleet Management Weekly, Sutton has been a constant resource for fleet professionals. As a writer, editor, publisher, and business manager, she continues to inform and promote fleet through active involvement with NAFA, AFLA, and WIFM. As a generous, experienced, and successful mentor, Sutton has helped countless fleet professionals build and succeed in their own careers.
- President of Superior Chevrolet (Retired)
- Years in fleet: 47
Dave Durepo’s career has encompassed complete dedication to the fleet industry. He supported AFLA becoming North American Fleet Organization (as well as a Global one) and presided over the 50th Anniversary Conference. In his career, Durepo continued the original vision of Ed Bobit.
- President, National Car Rental; Conference of Automotive Remarketing (CAR); Automotive Information Network; AutomotiveDigest.com
- Years in fleet: 40
In 1996, Chuck Parker developed the industry’s first end-user remarketing conference (the Conference of Automotive Remarketing – CAR) to address the high volume of off-lease units that entered the wholesale market during the early years of retail leasing.
In 1998, he created the first digital fleet publishing company – the Automotive Information Network, published the web magazine AutomotiveDigest.com, and distributed nine market segment e-newsletters. Parker has held significant positions in all the major fleet segments – President of National Car Rental, fleet leasing, truck leasing, and fleet publishing. Parker held senior executive management positions at Avis Leasing, National Car Rental, Rollins Auto Leasing, The LeMans Group, Colonial National Bank, and founded two automotive systems and marketing companies.
Starting in 1998, Parker served nine years as publisher of automotive print magazines at Bobit Publishing and held the role of director of electronic media.
- Senior vice president, fleet sales & consulting, Merchants Fleet; Donlen; GE Capital
- Years in fleet: 38
Tom Coffey is a 38-year veteran of the fleet industry. He currently serves as senior vice president of fleet at Merchants Fleet, where he leads 45 business development professionals and provides strategic oversight to Merchants Fleet’s development of industry-leading offerings to the broad fleet client base.
Throughout his career, Coffey has managed portfolios exceeding a billion dollars in assets for fleet clients across numerous industries, including utility, construction, engineering, and government. He has earned the business of hundreds of clients; represented hundreds of thousands of organic new business units; delivered over a billion dollars in savings to clients; led regional and national sales teams throughout North America; and facilitated dozens of innovative new business offerings to the fleet industry.
Prior to Merchants Fleet, Coffey served as the senior vice president of sales for Donlen for nearly a decade. He was also the senior vice president of financial solutions for GE Capital, leading business development and client services, as well as the company’s North American efforts in truck fleet services. Coffey also has extensive national sales experience, having held numerous regional fleet sales management positions in Atlanta, St. Louis, and Pittsburgh.
Coffey’s expertise is widely recognized by his peers throughout the industry, as is his commitment to building lasting client relationships. As a passionate advocate for innovation in fleet, Coffey continues to drive change by challenging people to think differently about the fleet industry’s role in making our nation more efficient, safe, and sustainable. Under his leadership, Merchants is driving fleet electrification throughout North America, including reservations of nearly 40,000 electric vehicles and $2.5 billion committed toward converting its mobility fleet to 50% electric by 2025, and 50% of its clients’ fleets electric by 2030.
Coffey is a valued and respected member of the fleet community, and Merchants Fleet is extremely proud to have someone of his tenure on the team.
- Vice president, connected car & platform services, Geotab
- Years in fleet: 26
Sherry Calkins has been actively involved in the fleet industry for decades. She is a bright light and contributor to NAFA and AFLA trade organizations and has served as a reliable and knowledgeable mentor for many fleet professionals.
- National commercial account manager, Subaru of America; Sanofi; Cigna
- Years in fleet: 30
Tina Kourakos was instrumental in introducing the viability of non-traditional fleet choices during her tenure at Subaru of America. Dozens of Fleet Manager of the Year award winners and nominees have served as her customers.
Patrick (Pat) O'Connor
- Years in fleet: 20+
As U.S. Legislative Counsel for the NAFA Fleet Management Association, O’Connor has been the voice for fleet management in Washington, D.C. for more than two decades. In testimony before Congress and federal agencies or in face-to-face meetings with lawmakers, O’Connor provides a fleet manager’s perspective on a diverse range of issues. O’Connor is leading NAFA’s efforts to shape federal requirements for autonomous and connected vehicles.
- National Car Rental; Wheels Inc.
- Years in fleet: 32
Palmer entered the industry in 1967 as the fleet maintenance manager for Lend Lease Transportation Co., which eventually became the car leasing division of the National Car Rental system. When it was sold in 1986, he was hired by Wheels, Inc. as an assistant to the VP of remarketing, before later being elevated to VP of remarketing and later to SVP-vehicle operations. During his career, he helped implement a variety of computerized benchmarking, reporting, and forecasting methods now standard in remarketing. He was also active in industry associations such as AFLA and NAFA, and inducted into the National Association of Fleet Resale Dealers (NAFRD) Hall of Fame in 1995. He joined NAFRD as a consultant after retiring in 1999.
Sal Giacchi, CAFM, CFM (Deceased)
- GAF; Lorillard; Giacchi & Violi Transport LTD.
- Years in fleet: 30+
In 1971, Sal Giacchi became assistant fleet administrator with GAF. In 1974, he was selected to head the used-car operation and used-car marketing network. In 1981, he moved to Lorillard Tobacco. He was named AF Fleet Manager of the Year in 1996 and previously served as president for AFLA and NAFA. In 2001, he joined Anthony L. Violi Sr. to form Giacchi & Violi Transport Ltd.
Bob Berke (Deceased)
- Years in fleet: 30
Berke took over full-time management of NAFA as the association’s founding executive director in March 1965. He spent his entire career with the Association during its growth years until retiring from NAFA in 1985.
- Hughes Aircraft Co.; Computer Sciences Corp.; The CEI Group
- Years in fleet: 30+
Croze began her career in fleet as a division fleet administrator with Hughes Aircraft Company. During her time with the company, she created the first driver safety training program and van pool program. She later joined Computer Sciences Corporation in 1981 as a fleet and travel manager. Croze served as CEI’s Western region sales manager from 1991 to 2018.
- Ernst & Young; MAXIMUS; Mercury Associates, Inc.
- Years in fleet: 35+
Lauria has been the president of Mercury Associates, Inc. since 2002. Mercury, the largest dedicated fleet management consultancy in North America, has assisted hundreds of public and private-sector organizations improve their fleet management practices. Lauria, who has worked in more than 20 countries around the world, began his consulting career with Ernst & Young’s National Transportation Consulting Group in 1984.
- The Hawk Group; Piemonte National Fleet
- Years in fleet: 46
Cass first started at Piemonte National Fleet (formerly Al Piemonte Ford) in 1976. He was later recruited into the fleet side of the business by Milo Matick, former VP of fleet for Piemonte National Fleet. Cass held this position for 26 years until 2003 when he assumed the position of fleet director. In 2018, he joined The Hawk Group (a Chicago area dealer group with 12 dealerships) to lead its new national fleet department.
- Chapman Auto Group
- Years in fleet: 40+
Piccoli’s career in fleet began in 1974 as a leasing rep for Holman Leasing. He later moved to Potamkin Chevrolet as a Truck/Fleet salesperson, and in 1985, he had a brief stint as GM for Pacifico Fleet Group. He then returned to Potamkin to bring them to a national presence in 1989. In 2008 he joined Chapman Auto Group as director of fleet operations.
Congratulations to all the nominees!