FleetNet America president/CEO Summer to retire

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C. Oren Summer, current president and chief executive officer of FleetNet America Inc., a subsidiary of Arkansas Best Corp., has announced his retirement from the company effective June 30. Gary W. Cummings, current executive vice president and chief operating officer, will become FleetNet’s president and chief operating officer on Feb. 1. Summer will continue to serve as FleetNet’s CEO until his retirement.

Summer, who will be 65 at the time of his retirement, has led FleetNet since its January 1993 inception as Carolina Breakdown Service Inc. He began his career in the transportation industry in 1969, working in a variety of areas associated with equipment maintenance, repair and supplies at Carolina Freight Carriers Corp., a company purchased by Arkansas Best in 1995.

Throughout his career, Summer has been active in industry trade associations, including the Technology and Maintenance Council of the American Trucking Associations. He has led a number of TMC task forces and study groups, and he served as general chairman of TMC in 1995. Summer is currently a TMC board member. In addition to receiving several industry awards, in 2005 Summer was named the recipient of CCJ’s 2005 Technology and Maintenance Career Leadership Award.

“Oren Summer has spent his entire 42-year career in the equipment and maintenance industry,” says Judy McReynolds, Arkansas Best president and CEO. “He was the driving force behind the creation of FleetNet. The success it enjoys today is a result of the many years of dedication and guidance Oren has provided. FleetNet provides an important service to transportation equipment fleets. Under Oren’s leadership, its services have been crafted in a manner resulting in FleetNet’s leadership position in third-party equipment vendor management.”

Cummings, 45, has served in his current position for over three years. He began with the company in January 2005 as vice president of corporate services. Prior to joining FleetNet, Cummings oversaw the information technology department of a former less-than-truckload subsidiary of Arkansas Best. Prior to that, he served in various financial capacities at Arkansas Best. Cummings is an active member of TMC, and he is involved in various industry activities. He grew up in the transportation industry. Beginning at an early age, Gary worked in a trucking company that was owned and managed by his parents.

“Throughout his various assignments at Arkansas Best and some of its subsidiaries, I have worked closely with Gary Cummings,” McReynolds says. “I am confident in his ability to follow Oren Summer in leading FleetNet into the future. Gary’s lifetime of experiences in many critical transportation areas uniquely equips him to direct FleetNet. FleetNet’s customers and employees will benefit from Gary’s positive outlook and his energetic leadership style. His focus on customer service will be an important element of further strengthening FleetNet’s reputation for providing timely, vendor resources to truck fleets all over the United States and Canada.”

After Summer’s retirement, he will continue to provide his expertise to FleetNet as a consultant to the company, McReynolds says. “During Gary’s tenure at FleetNet, he and Oren have worked together to improve FleetNet’s traditional service offerings while developing and adding new services,” McReynolds says. “In the coming months prior to Oren’s retirement, they will prepare for a seamless transition that helps preserve the superior customer care for which FleetNet is known.”