Chief Commercial Officer
Daimler Buses North America
How many people does your company employ?
Daimler Buses North America employs in the range of 1,000 dedicated employees representing the brands of Orion, Setra, and Sprinter buses.
How long have you worked in the industry? 24 years.
How long have you been an APTA member? 24 years.
What drew you to a career in public transportation?
It was more circumstance at the outset. I was fortunate to be given an opportunity to join a great company (at the time Orion Bus Industries) as a good friend's family owned the business. As I grew within the company and the industry, the opportunity to work with professionals and to enhance the mobility of our nation became very appealing. From there, additional opportunities arose at Detroit Diesel Corporation and then at Daimler Buses North America, where I was able to work as both a component supplier to the industry as well as a full line vehicle provider.
What have you found to be the most valuable APTA benefit or resource—that helps you do your job?
I have always viewed APTA as an excellent representative and advocate of every aspect of our industry to better position our businesses at all levels of government, the media, and the general population. To this end, the advocacy efforts—including position papers—have allowed me and our company to properly inform and educate our elected officials. Specifically, we meet regularly with our Congressmen and Senators—and APTA’s background information on issues is invaluable in these efforts.
Further, by attending APTA’s meetings and conferences, I have the opportunity to interact with all segments of the industry—whether developing strategic directions on industry issues or being on the ground level for key initiatives. By serving on various APTA and BMBG committees, I can undertake these initiatives, but undertake them with the kind of background knowledge and information that will increase my chances of success.
For example, there have been recent bills in Congress on authorization that have required swift action from us to educate our elected officials. To accomplish that, we have used the details and data from APTA in our meeting with our New York State member of Congress to ensure that some of the less logical items in these bills do not gain momentum.
Please explain why or how this has helped.
Business members have been significantly active in the authorization efforts over the last few years. We use talking points and business case for public transportation data—supplied by APTA—whenever we meet with our elected officials. I can say categorically that it would be difficult to make such a compelling case on a regular basis without APTA’s resources and support.
For every authorization period, we received significant support from APTA—and the data we used was bolstered by the information APTA provided.
What do you like most about your job?
In my role with Daimler Buses North America, I encounter new opportunities and challenges every day. Those, in turn, ensure that my daily routine is significantly varied!
The most enjoyable part of my work, though, is meeting and talking with customers. Through those meetings, I can understand their specific requirements and the challenges they face, which means that we can more closely match our products and services with their needs.
What is unique about your business (what would readers be surprised to learn)?
Daimler Buses North America is part of Daimler Buses worldwide, which is the largest builder of buses and coaches greater than 8 tonnes. We produce over 40,000 vehicles annually and are present in virtually every major global market.
Make sure you see Patrick Scully's video, now that you've read this!
Editor's Note: Daimler created this video for APTA's very successful 2011 EXPO in New Orleans.