Executive Vice President Customer Strategies
and Analytics, ADESA
Tom goes by many names: analyst, economist, road warrior. But if you ask him, he describes himself as, “Analytical Services.” Because to him, it all comes down to that single word: service. If that means jumping on a plane to consult with a customer, he’s there. Although he’s generally optimistic, he doesn’t sugarcoat what’s going on in the market. He tells it like it is, whether the news is good or bad. What’s in a name? Tom’s given name is Athanasios Kontorousis. This service extends to his heritage. He played drums at this year’s Indianapolis Greek Festival, and he’s also taught Greek history, music and dance throughout the years.
Executive Vice President, Operations and Finance, ADESA
Glue needs time to age before it really sticks. Paul has spent a third of his life at ADESA. During that time as the company glue, he’s held fast to a long-term view that connects customers and employees. That unites business units. And that joins industry associations. Like glue, he has the capacity to fix things immediately, but always with the purpose of lasting stability. Which is good, considering he’s the guy that decides where the money gets spent. But labels like accountant or bean counter don’t apply to Paul. He’s more fun-loving than fastidious and more practical joker than micromanager.
Executive Vice President
Sales, Marketing and Special Services, ADESA
If you haven’t met Bob Rauschenberg yet, you will. He’s a people person. And a person for the people. He gives compliments freely and handshakes with purpose. Each day, he chooses to be brand new, and hopes that he can share that feeling with everyone he meets. His work ethic doesn’t end at 5 p.m. And his word still means something. If he says he’ll do it, he will. Even if it takes 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. It takes an awful lot of birthday cake to fuel his pace. Good thing he burns it off riding his motorcycle, boating or hiking.
Vice President of Marketing, ADESA
Small in size but big in creativity, Carol isn’t afraid to speak the truth. To be the voice of the customer. She understands it takes big risks to achieve big gains. So, first she listens. Observes. Absorbs. Then, she surrounds herself with very talented people with high standards. The result? She creates art through strategy, images and words. Carol also has the uncanny ability to always pick the perfect restaurant—even if she’s never been to that city. But fasten your seatbelt if you let her drive; she speeds up in turns and refuses to idle at the back of the pack.
Communications Manager, ADESA
Darci Valentine. Yes, it’s her real name. No, she’s never been a comic book character or a super hero. But she does have to apply super-human strength to juggle all that she has going on. Being word girl and communications maven is a big job. And she doesn’t take it lightly. She always gets the story. By asking the right questions, and then really listening. By building trust with a mix of sincerity, comic relief and common sense. By knowing what to tell and what to keep to herself. She reads between, inside and outside the lines. Her passion for words is only surpassed by her love of dogs. In fact, she speaks canine fluently.
Senior Vice President of Dealer Sales and Services, ADESA
Tim Zierden…he is a fighter. He fights for what’s right. For what’s best for the customer. For what’s best for employees. He creates value and improves the customer experience—never ignoring even the slightest detail. He’s the voice of the underdog. At work or at play, he’s not afraid to take risks for a bigger win or to live life to its fullest. He’s always willing to experience new things—especially if they involve a throttle and high speeds. Whether he’s flying a plane or getting customer feedback, he applies an equal level of focus and intensity.
Executive Director of Dealer Services & Auction eBusiness, ADESA
Keith Crerar keeps his cool whether he’s on the job, on the road or on the ice. Developing a sales strategy, negotiating a partnership proposal, planning the perfect tailgate at Colts home games or coaching kids’ hockey, he knows when to go for the hit and when to pass. He understands it takes speed, balance, strength and a whole lot of guts to inspire change. But he’d always rather lead than follow. Especially when he knows it’s what’s best for the team.
ADESA Canada Senior Vice President, Sales and Marketing and Atlantic Operations
Lisa is an all-around “bidness” wiz. But her strong suit is customer relations. With more than 25 years in the industry, it’s no wonder. Lisa has the gift of gab. As an auctioneer, it’s a trait that serves her well. She makes connections. Whether it’s the maitre de at a restaurant, or a customer in the lanes, she just has a way with people—especially car people. Her versatility and service-focused approach give her a unique perspective. She’s a fixer. And she doesn’t mind taking the long road to make things right. Of course, if she had it her way, she’d probably just sail there instead.
Chief Client Officer, KAR Auction Services
Tom Caruso is the ultimate car guy. He has forgotten more about the auction business than most of us will ever know. He gets it from the ground up. He connects with employees, customers and the industry because he knows what makes them tick. He’s walked in their shoes. It was the support of his family that got him where he is today. And he gives back that same support to his industry. He exhibits a leadership role at all levels. But always remains humble. He’s serious about his craft, but never takes himself too seriously. Except maybe when he’s talking about his city. The proudest addition to his key ring: the Key to the City of Boston.
Chief Technology Officer, KAR Auction Services
Civil engineer by trade—artisan by nature. Building is in his blood. When it comes to the aesthetics of business, he also has a sixth sense. Creator of corporate strategy, he lends calm to chaos. Balance is key. He thinks fast on his feet. A native of the Emerald Isle, it’s no surprise he hangs his hat in the City by the Bay. Never one to let moss grow beneath his feet, a trek through the Sierras is a welcomed diversion for Peter. But a weekend at home with his family also suits this father of three just fine.