Sr. VP and CIO, Automotive Resources International
How long at Automotive Resources International: I've been with ARI, which handles fleet leasing and management, for over three years.
Career accomplishment I'm most proud of: I was part of a very motivated team at Commerce Bank prior to obtaining my position at ARI. In a two-year time frame, we developed and implemented a new teller and customer relationship system, which supported 2 million customers in 500 locations. This system helped the bank win several awards and secure new business.
Most important career influencer: My parents, for instilling in me the Golden Rule--"One should treat others as one would like others to treat oneself." They taught me to be a good person and that everything else will take care of itself.
Decision I wish I could do over: Early in my career, I didn't recognize the plus side of failure. If I made a mistake, I'd either ignore it or, even worse, hide it. Now I stress the importance of learning from mistakes. On a weekly basis, my team holds an incident and problem management team meeting to identify areas where we can improve.On The Job
Size of IT team: 140 full-time employees and 25 contractors
IT budget: $26 million
The next big thing for my business: The integration of technology in vehicles will give fleet managers more real-time data, from notification that something in the engine needs attention to alerts that a driver is speeding. That information will increase their ability to control operating costs and improve driver behavior.
One thing I'm looking to do better: More tightly aligning the IT team's focus with the company's business plan and increasing their understanding of how their day-to-day activities support ARI's business.
Lesson learned from the recession: Always invest--in your people and yourself--in all economic cycles.
Kids and tech careers: Most professions today are tied in some form or fashion to technology. The stronger kids' base knowledge is tied to technology, the more opportunities will open to them.
Colleges/degrees: Drexel University, BS in finance; Phoenix University, MBA in technology management
Leisure activities: Coaching basketball
Best book read recently: Failing Forward: Turning Mistakes Into Stepping Stones For Success, by John C. Maxwell
Smartphone of choice: iPhone
Personal computer: Mac
If I weren't a CIO, I'd be ... a grammar school principal