CINCINNATI—Tire Discounters Inc. Chairman William “Chip” Wood is taking on the CEO's duties as well, succeeding Paul Brunner, who's leaving the company after five-plus years as president and CEO.
Tire Discounters also has promoted Jamie Ward, executive vice president, sales and operations, to president and COO. Mr. Brunner, who joined the Cincinnati-based dealership in October 2010, is wrapping up several special projects during a leadership transition phase, the company said.
“We are extremely grateful to Paul for his dedication and service,” Mr. Wood said. During Mr. Brunner's tenure, Tire Discounters doubled the size of its retail store footprint to 100 stores, including stores in four major markets outside of Tire Discounters' traditional market footprint, and moved the headquarters to downtown Cincinnati.
Mr. Wood said he's excited to step back into day-to-day management and leadership of the company.
“We are positioned positively for future growth and expansion,” he said. “I am more energized than ever before. I can't wait to see what this phase will bring.”
The change also will allow Mr. Wood to work side-by-side with his son Steven Wood, director of real estate, and his brother Chris Wood, vice president.
“When I started in the business, I worked closely with my father,” Mr. Wood said. “Now I have the opportunity to further mentor and guide my son.”
Mr. Ward has worked for Tire Discounters for 20 years, working his way up from a retail store employee to executive vice president. He also has five years' experience working at Michel Tire Co. prior to joining Tire Discounters.
“To see Jamie become president is a very proud moment for me,” Mr. Wood said.
“I am humbled and honored to assume the position of president and COO,” Mr. Ward said. “It's a privilege to be a part of such an outstanding organization.”
Mr. Wood founded Tire Discounters in 1976 with a one-bay cinderblock building and a pickup truck loaded with tires.
“The momentum and growth we've experienced have been nothing short of thrilling,” he said.
The dealership employs more than 1,100 in its store network, with stores in Ohio, Kentucky, Indiana, Tennessee and Georgia. The 100th retail store opened recently in Fort Oglethorpe, Ga., a suburb of Chattanooga, Tenn.