FAIRFIELD, Calif. (Oct. 14, 2015) — Commercial tire dealer and distributor East Bay Tire Co. has hired industry veteran C. Howard Christman as its business development manager, tasked with leading the firm's growth and expansion initiatives.
Mr. Christman brings with him 47 years of senior leadership experience, most recently as west zone director, commercial business, for Michelin North America Inc.'s Tire Centers L.L.C. (TCi) subsidiary.
He began his career in the industry changing tires for Goodyear in 1968, after graduating high school. Upon completing his college education, Goodyear extended him a full-time position at its Casper, Wyo., facility, where he later was promoted to a commercial sales position.
Mr. Christman moved several times for Goodyear, taking on new roles with the company in Denver, Portland, Ore., and Stockton, Calif., where he met George Pehanick, Fairfield-based East Bay Tire CEO, for the first time.
After a period of time spent managing Goodyear's western region truck centers, Mr. Christman was promoted to national marketing strategy for commercial tire and service centers.
He eventually returned to the Bay Area to manage Goodyear's western commercial tire sales, including all its western commercial dealer operations. In 1999, Goodyear, Brad Ragan Inc, and Treadco Inc. joined together to form Wingfoot L.L.C., and Mr. Christman joined the start-up as vice president of the eastern U.S. commercial division.
Longing to move back to the West coast, Mr. Christman transferred to California to again lead Goodyear's western commercial dealer operation and truck centers before retiring from the company in 2006. Later that year, he joined TCi and retired this year at age 66 as west zone director of commercial business for the company.
“I've known Howard personally for over 30 years, and I am pleased to have someone of his caliber joining our team,” Mr. Pehanick said. “He is well respected in the industry — known for his honesty and integrity — and will be a true asset for [East Bay's] future growth and expansion.”
Mr. Christman said he is “looking forward to applying my skills to the expansion programs with East Bay Tire, primarily focusing on areas to improve efficiency and productivity.
“My experience acquiring, expanding and improving facilities will aid in the success of EBT's current growth strategies.
“I would be remiss if I didn't recognize how grateful I am to Goodyear and the TCi Michelin Group for the training, opportunities and experience that's led too so many personal friendships throughout the country,” he added.