The NAFA Fleet Management Association will formally begin a nationwide search for a new chief executive in the coming weeks, after it retains an executive search firm, according to the NAFA board member leading the effort to replace Phil Russo, who departed in August.
NAFA board members are evaluating the position and attributes of a potential candidate that would make a good fit in the role, said Ray Brisby, NAFA's senior vice president and retired fleet manager of the Calgary Fire Department in Canada.
"We're taking time to review the leadership structure at NAFA and look at the attributes of what a new leader should have," Brisby said. "Is it more to be the face of the organization or to be a servant leader."
Board members plan to solidify their approach to the candidate search next week when they meet during a board meeting that runs for two days following the Essentials of Fleet Management Seminar in Phoenix from Oct. 7 to 9.
NAFA isn't putting a timetable on the search, but Brisby said the organization would like a new chief executive in place well before NAFA's 2020 Institute & Expo event in Indianapolis in April.
Bill Schankel has been serving as the interim CEO, and he could be a candidate for the permanent position, Brisby said.
"That's up to Bill," Brisby said. "We're defining the attributes that we're looking for right now. We like Bill, and we think he's doing a great job for us."
NAFA is also crafting the agenda for its 2020 event, and plans to release the schedule in the coming weeks. The organization's board is rethinking whether it will devote a full day to mobility topics, as it did at the 2019 event. Mobility topics will be incorporated into 2020 show in some way, he said.
"We've always recognized there are various constituencies in the fleet world," Brisby said. "We're teaching skill and providing events for our members to succeed, and mobility is adding another arm to that."