- Director Commercial Services Group
- Ally Financial
Hobbies & passions outside of work: My primary passion revolves around my family. Hobbies include golf, tennis, and watching college and professional sporting events.
Favorite books: I read a lot of books focusing on American history and spy/thriller novels (currently reading Brad Thor’s Full Black).
Favorite TV show: You can never go wrong with Seinfeld!
Favorite musician: Classic rock from the late ‘70s and early ‘80s; however, living in Georgia, my daughters are trying to pull me into country. You just can’t beat the original Van Halen for energy and a good time.
Top personal achievement: My family, which started by convincing my wife, Mary Lee, to marry me.
Most interesting life experience: Playing golf with my father as a kid. Looking back on it now, he was teaching me a lot more than just playing golf.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? Get to know your customers and develop relationships beyond just the business side of things. Spending the additional time to listen and truly understand the specific needs of your customers from a personal level will pay dividends many times over.
- President & COO
- Northbrook, Ill.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Trying to stay in shape; world history and politics; the great outdoors — specifically enjoying our summer cabin activities in the Wisconsin northwoods; rock/alternative music; and travel.
Favorite books: Several regarding our financial crisis, including Boomerang by Michael Lewis; currently reading On China by Henry Kissinger and Dylan Ratigan’s Greedy Bastards.
Favorite movies: Current favorites include The Artist and The Help; all-time favorite is Casablanca.
Favorite musicians: Bruce Springsteen and Elvis Costello
Top personal achievement: Marrying my wife, Maribeth.
Most interesting life experience: Getting a chance to be an “expatriate” businessperson in Japan, Australia/New Zealand, and the UK.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? It’s not a “simple” business!
- Director Strategic Consulting
- Merchants Leasing
- Hooksett, N.H.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: I love technology because it never stops getting better. When I’m not working or playing with technology: travel, dogs, and grilling.
Favorite book: The Complete Meat Cookbook — watching friends and family smile as they devour something that had hooves is priceless.
Favorite TV show: Rome (Titus Pullo should be President!).
Favorite musicians: Eddie Vedder, Pearl Jam.
Top personal achievement: Personally: Awesome family and friends that support me. Professionally: Creating Web-based lifecycle management tools that have saved fleets millions of dollars while reducing tons of emissions.
Most interesting life experience: Ten days in Italy: the culture, the history, the sites, the food, the wine — all made better with great friends.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? “It’s not who you work for, it’s who you work with.” I have worked at some interesting places and helped many organizations and colleagues meet challenges in this industry; having professional, experienced, and caring friends is the most important thing.
- General Marketing Manager, North American Fleet, Lease and Remarketing Operations
- Ford Motor Company
- Dearborn, Mich.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: I love to run, and put in a lot of miles at a couple beautiful parks close to my home. I also really enjoy skiing (mostly alpine, but a little bit of cross-country), biking, hiking in the mountains, reading, and watching movies.
Favorite books: Anything related to history and historical fiction. You can learn a lot about leadership, strategy, and human nature by studying the past. I just read Empire of the Summer Moon, a factual account of the Comanche nation in the mid-19th century. My favorite novel is probably a Civil War book titled Andersonville, partly because it was written by an Iowan, like me.
Favorite movies: Saving Private Ryan or maybe Gladiator.
Favorite TV shows: The Office, but I’ll watch Seinfeld reruns anytime.
Favorite musician: Counting Crows (great way to get the kids out of bed on Saturday mornings). I also really enjoy jazz from the 1940s.
Top personal achievement: Marrying a wonderful lady and raising two great kids rank at the top of the list. I’m also proud of a fantastic 26-plus year career at Ford, including assignments in nine different cities. Finally, running 16 marathons and countless other road races has been a lot of work and a lot of fun.
Most interesting life experience: Two weeks in southern Africa would rank high on the list. Flying into isolated safari camps in the Okavanga Delta on a four-seat plane to experience wildlife up close and personal was pretty amazing. Second on the list would be a 50K extreme adventure race called “Dances with Dirt” that I ran last fall.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? “Fleet” is a very broad concept and there’s a lot to learn. Look to people who have experience in the industry for insight and guidance. Ask a lot of questions, listen more than you talk, and learn to appreciate unique and diverse opinions.
- Founder & CEO
- GPS Insight
- Scottsdale, Ariz.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Time with family, snowboarding, and trying to stay in shape.
Favorite book: Confederacy of Dunces by John Kennedy Toole.
Favorite movie: Arthur (the original).
Favorite TV show: Arrested Development.
Favorite musician: Lately, I can’t get enough of Rodrigo y Gabriela, but overall, maybe The Rolling Stones.
Top personal achievement: Haven’t achieved it yet, but getting through Army Officer Candidate School (the second time) was a once-in-a-lifetime achievement that almost killed me.
Most interesting life experience: I’ve done 110 skydives (starting in the Army) and 150 or so scuba dives, but nothing as exciting as the birth of two of my three kids (I was out of the country scuba diving when my second kid was born, which was a different, interesting experience when I got home).
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? Go to as many conferences as possible. We spent a few years not really understanding what our customers wanted until we got really involved with NAFA, AFLA, etc. Also, get into fleet sooner! It's filled with much more interesting and nicer people than the trading world where I previously came from.
- Corporate Sales Manager
- BMW of North America
- Woodcliff Lake, N.J.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Cooking and fishing with my boys, in particular a good marlin or albacore run and subsequent BBQ on the dock or beach; shooting sports such as skeet or clays; and spending time with my wife Barbra and three sons, the oldest of whom is a U.S. Marine.
Favorite books: Jack Kerouac’s On the Road and Boone, A Biography of Daniel Boone by Robert Morgan.
Favorite musicians: Herb Albert and The Tijuana Brass, as well as The Allman Brothers Band.
Top personal achievement: Being a father and husband.
Most interesting life experience: Being with my grandfather and living with the Navajo Indians on a reservation when I was young.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? Learn what displacement and torque means and how that relates to cost of funds.
- Senior Director, Client Relations
- Wheels, Inc.
- Des Plaines, Ill.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: My husband, Jeff, and I love to cook and enjoy gourmet food and wine. I also enjoy playing the piano and walking my dog, Fred.
Favorite book: Judgment of Paris – California vs. France by George Taber. This is a great book about the blind wine tasting that took place in 1976 in Paris.
Favorite TV show: My favorite thing to watch is NFL football. Even when the Bears aren’t playing well, my fantasy team helps add excitement to the other games.
Favorite musicians: Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart for my serious side. Prince for my fun side.
Top personal achievement: Being able to raise two beautiful, healthy, and happy teenage daughters, Maggie (16) and Paige (14).
Most interesting life experience: Going to Nassau last spring with my youngest daughter. We took a catamaran and snorkeled over a large reef. That was my first time snorkeling and it was so beautiful and peaceful. Once we got used to having so many fish swimming around us, we relaxed and enjoyed the sights.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? I wish I knew earlier to be ready for constant change. Starting out in fleet 20 years ago, I thought that there was an end to what you needed to know to be successful. Couldn’t be further from the truth. You need to stay on top of our industry trends and anticipate what fleet should look like in the future. It’s actually what makes fleet so much fun to be a part of — creating fleet solutions while also developing lifelong friends.
- Driving Dynamics, Inc.
- Newark, Del.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Traveling overseas experiencing and learning firsthand about other wonderful cultures; cruising through the countryside on my Harley; and attending great jazz venues.
Favorite book: The Law of Success by Napoleon Hill, originally published in 1925.
Favorite movie: Avatar (IMAX 3D).
Favorite TV show: Mini-series documentary, The Power of Myth.
Favorite musician: Thelonious Monk.
Top personal achievement: Married 41 years to a great lady! Also quite proud that I made my debut at Carnegie Hall as a professional musician at age 14.
Most interesting life experience: Living in a religious community for five years as a young man. It provided me with a solid foundation to stay centered through life’s ups and downs and to joyfully embrace the journey.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? People first, sheet metal second!
- General Manager, Fleet and Commercial Operations
- General Motors
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Spending time with my wife and two children (the loves of my life) and golf.
Favorite book: Straight from the Gut by Jack Welch.
Favorite movie: Hoosiers.
Favorite TV shows: NCAA basketball tournament and the Masters Golf Tournament.
Favorite musicians: Stevie Wonder, Elton John.
Top personal achievement: Earning my MBA from the University of Chicago.
Most interesting experience: Adopting my two children (Emma, nearly 5 years old, and Hunter, 18 months).
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? I wish someone had told me how much fun it was going to be.
- National Account Manager
- Mercedes-Benz USA
- Southeastern U.S.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Spending time with family boating and enjoying water sports on the rivers, intracoastal waterway, and ocean in South Florida. I also like to do weight training, play rollerblade hockey, and donate my time and resources to help others in need around our community.
Favorite book: The Anatomy of an Entrepreneur by Joseph J. Jacobs.
Favorite movie: La Dolce Vita (1960).
Favorite musicians: Steve Winwood, Nile Rodgers, and U2.
Top personal achievement: Serving and protecting the United States of America during my time with U.S. Army Europe (USAREUR) in the 1980s. Also, playing for a championship soccer team Nuremberg Community) and learning the German language during my tour of duty in Bavaria.
Most interesting life experience: Living in NYC in the early 1990s, working for a record label and production company as a music video executive producer/producer.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? The fleet world is incredibly large, but also very small at the same time. “Everyone knows everyone” ultimately, so ensure that you research your market(s), areas of interest, and key players before entering a specific fleet position. Once you’re in, you will be better suited to quickly establish your core network and relationships and be able to grow them as rapidly and strategically as possible.
- Head of Fleet Marketing, Remarketing and Company Car Programs
- Chrysler Group LLC
- Auburn Hills, Mich.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Outdoors during the summer racing and cruising our sailboat with family and friends. During the winter, skiing the mountains of the western U.S. Indoors, working on one of my numerous model ship projects.
Favorite books: For fiction, Henderson the Rain King by Saul Bellow. For nonfiction, any book that explains the complexities of our world like Salt: A World History by Mark Kurlansky or The Secret Life of Lobsters by Trevor Corson.
Favorite TV show: NOVA.
Favorite musician: Jimmy Buffet.
Top personal achievement: With my wife, raising three successful children.
Most interesting life experience: Working through the regrettable Chrysler bankruptcy and the building of the new Chrysler Group. Both events have been intellectually fascinating and personally rewarding for the success that has been achieved.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? Enjoy learning the complexities of the entire fleet industry.
- President and CEO
- LeasePlan USA
Hobbies & passions outside of work: I lecture and speak at high schools and colleges on the subject of leadership. And I am an avid NFL fan (favorite team is the New Orleans Saints).
Favorite book: James Patterson's Alex Cross series.
Favorite movie: Pulp Fiction.
Favorite TV show: 24.
Favorite musician: Darius Rucker (country). When he was Hootie, he was pretty good, too.
Top personal achievement: Raising four incredible daughters.
Most interesting life experience: Worked for two years in Sydney, Australia, and realized the American way is not always the right way.
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? That fleet is much more complicated than it looks on the surface. At the surface, you are told, “you’re in the company car business,” but it is so much more than that. It really is a great industry with great people.
- Senior Vice President, Fleet Services
- Automotive Resources International (ARI)
- Mt. Laurel, N.J.
Hobbies & passions outside of work: Family, fishing, beach and boating, and sports (NY Giants and NY Yankees fan!)
Favorite books: The Old Man and the Sea and Vince Flynn’s fictional series about Mitch Rapp, a counter-terrorism operative.
Favorite TV show: Most of the TV I watch is sports related.
Favorite musician: Jimmy Buffet.
Top personal achievement: Being a dad. Being responsible for bringing three other people into the world and then helping to support, teach, and nurture them into being good and productive individuals was the most difficult and daunting task I have ever attempted. I’m happy to say they seem to be turning out pretty well, so we are all lucky to have their mother there to support us!
What advice do you wish someone had given you before entering fleet? Be open to constant learning. Continually question current practices and be willing to change and adapt. Every fleet is different, and there are so many changes happening, from manufacturers and supply chain, technology, regulations, and business demands, that every day presents new challenges. If you are looking for a static and predictable business life, this might not be the industry to join!