CINCINNATI — Tire Discounters has strengthened its executive team with a pair of hires it considers key to the dealership's growth strategy.
The new executives are Sheri Harper, a former Wendy's International L.L.C. executive hired as chief people officer — a new position — and Jeff Rodgers, an executive with Michelman Inc., who takes over the chief financial officer post.
Tire Discounters said it created the CPO position to strengthen its commitment to developing and supporting a deep pool of talent across the entire organization, currently at 1,500 employees and growing.
"The [CPO] position is a critical addition to further Tire Discounters' continued growth," President and CEO Jamie Ward said. "We want to continue to build and retain our exceptional customer-facing team who are the lifeblood of our company.
"I feel confident that Sheri's extensive experience is a perfect fit with Tire Discounters' family-owned and -operated values. She will ensure that this new position has a positive impact on Tire Discounters for years to come."
Tire Discounters is considered the eighth largest independent retail tire dealership in the U.S. with 140-plus locations spread across six states. The company has been growing by 12 to 15 stores per year in recent years, but sees that number now jumping to at least 25 per year.
Ms. Harper brings a dozen years of experience in human resources — HR director as Wendy's for eight years and CPO of Frisch's Restaurants for four years before that. Her leadership earned her recognition as one of Venue Magazine's Women of Influence and in 2019 one of the Cincinnati Business Courier's Women Who Mean Business.
"My professional focus has always been on the betterment of the 'people strategy' at large companies with thousands of employees," Ms. Harper said. "To be able to take that professional experience and apply it to a company so dedicated to expansion and growth like Tire Discounters is a fantastic opportunity. I'm looking forward to improving upon that commitment in this role."
Mr. Rodgers brings a decade-plus of experience serving as CFO and COO in a variety of industries and companies, most recently as executive vice president, CFO and chief operating officer at Michelman, where he presided over locations around the globe, including the Americas, EMEA, China, India and Asian Pacific Rim regions.
He succeeds Kevin Burke, who held the position for five years.
"I am thrilled to have this opportunity to work for a fast-growing company with such a commitment to its employees," Mr. Rodgers said. "I'm looking forward to putting my strategic leadership skills, experience and background to work on both the business operations side and acquisition opportunities to specifically drive our company's growth."
Mr. Ward called Mr. Burke a "talented finance leader who was instrumental in setting up Tire Discounters for big growth and expansion opportunities. We wish him the best of luck as he pursues his next career move.”
These hirings come less than a month after Tire Discounters hired former Amazon.com Inc. and Procter & Gamble Corp. executive Chris Yapp as chief marketing officer.