Holman Automotive Group has announced that Melinda “Mindy” Holman has been named chairman of the board, and ARI President Carl Ortell will assume the role of CEO. Brian Bates has been named COO and CFO of Holman Automotive.
As part of the executive changes, long-time Chairman Joseph Holman will assume the role of chairman emeritus, serving as a mentor and offering counsel to the Holman board and executive team, according to the company.
“This is both very exciting and a very natural progression for the Holman organization, which has grown significantly since the company was founded by my grandfather Steward Holman more than 90 years ago,” said Mindy Holman. “This change in leadership will allow us to leverage our talent, resources and knowledge across all of our lines of business, which, in turn, will allow us to become an even more flexible and dynamic organization.”
She emphasized that the core principles upon which the business was founded – hiring and empowering the best, most talented individuals; providing exceptional customer service; and giving back to the communities that support Holman’s success – continue to guide the business and its leadership.
“I am tremendously honored to be asked to serve as CEO of Holman Automotive,” said Carl Ortell. “Holman is comprised of four unique automotive businesses, all of which provide critical, industry-leading products and services but which also complement each other incredibly well. We also have the best people – professionals who are incredibly knowledgeable and dedicated to providing our clients with exceptional customer service. We are well positioned to draw upon our strengths in order to pursue new opportunities and continue to grow and expand. Our future will be about building a one-business mindset that serves consumers, businesses, governments and other entities in various markets, industries, countries and regions.”
A 29-year employee of Holman, Ortell has been the president of ARI since 2010. Ortell has led the company through turbulent economic times while continuing to grow the business, expanding to new global markets, and most notably, building on the culture of learning and employee development that put ARI on Fortune’s 100 Best Companies to Work For list three years in a row, according to the company.
Bates has held numerous leadership positions throughout the Holman organization during his 26-year tenure. Most recently as CFO for Holman and ARI, Bates has been the catalyst for consolidation and cooperation between several lines of business. In his new role as COO and CFO, he will expand this initiative and work closely with Ortell and the executive team.
New appointments have been made across the organization as well. Chris Conroy has been appointed executive vice president, Holman and president of ARI and Bill Cariss has been appointed executive vice president, Holman and president of Retail Operations.
Conroy joined ARI in 1994. During his 21 years with Holman, he has held a number of leadership positions at ARI in Canada and the U.S. Most recently, he was executive vice president, Global Operations, and oversaw ARI’s expansion into Europe. Conroy also led ARI’s most recent strategic planning initiative.
After beginning his career at ARI in 1984, Cariss transitioned to the dealership side of the business in 1996 and became vice president of Dealership Operations in 2000. He is the architect of the company’s current dealership network, having led the diversification and growth strategy of Holman’s retail operations. He also championed the expansion of Steward Financial Services, the organization’s retail finance company. Earlier in his career with the company, Cariss handled regional fleet sales in Southern California and the Pacific Northwest.
Additionally, the following appointments have been made:
- Frank Cardile has been appointed to the newly created role of group vice president, Holman Automotive. Cardile will continue to be responsible for Holman’s manufacturing business at Auto Truck Group. Cardile joined ARI in 1983, serving in a variety of leadership positions including senior vice president of Operations. In 2013, Cardile transitioned to his current leadership role with Auto Truck.
- Anne Williams has also been appointed to the role of group vice president, Holman Automotive and will continue to serve as president of RMP Powertrain Solutions. Since joining the organization in 1989, Williams has served at several different Holman retail locations in a variety management positions including general manager of Holman Toyota-Scion. During her tenure there, the dealership was awarded the Toyota President's Award for outstanding achievement by Toyota Motor Sales. She became president of RMP in February of 2014.
- Bob White has been promoted to executive vice president and chief operating officer of ARI. White has been with ARI since 1989, serving in a variety of operational leadership roles. Most recently, he was executive vice president, Fleet Management.
- Glenn Gardner has been promoted to chief operating officer of Holman’s Retail Operations. Gardner worked for Curtis Circulation and Amerigas Corporation prior to joining the company in 1983. During his tenure, Gardner has served as assistant controller, controller, and general manager at various Holman dealerships. He was promoted to the position of vice president of Southern Dealership Operations in 2002.