DTNA appoints new executives to aftermarket and operations

Daimler Trucks North America (DTNA) announced a series of executive appointments to its Aftermarket and Operations organization. “Effective June 1, 2017, the appointments draw upon the deep talent bench within DTNA and position experienced senior managers for organizational optimization,” the company said.

Rich Simons has been named general manager, aftermarket parts sales at DTNA. Simons will succeed Jeff Wallis who will be retiring from a career spanning over 35 years at DTNA and Detroit Diesel.

In his new role, Simons will be responsible for leading the aftermarket sales functions within the company, including parts and glider sales to the DTNA network, fleets, and export markets, for all DTNA brands, including Freightliner, Western Star, Detroit, Thomas Built Buses, and Alliance Truck Parts.

“Through Jeff’s leadership, the Aftermarket Parts Sales area evolved in significant ways, delivering profitable aftermarket sales performance that greatly exceeded our business goals,” said Friedrich Baumann, senior vice president of aftermarket at Daimler Trucks North America. “Rich brings a deep, well-rounded knowledge of the business to the position, which makes him uniquely valuable to lead the Aftermarket Parts Sales team.”

Paul Romanaggi succeeds Simons as general manager, Central Service for DTNA. Romanaggi will be responsible for leading truck and powertrain service activities throughout the U.S. and Canada, including dealer and fleet field support, service engineering, call center support, new product service readiness, service literature and systems, and all technical training activities.

“Paul’s experience leading DTNA’s warranty, pricing, service and parts distribution is an ideal fit for the position of General Manager, Central Service,” said Baumann. “Paul’s stellar history of unquestioned leadership will enable him to take the service network to new heights of support, training, and expeditious responsiveness.”

Succeeding Romanaggi in the role of general manager supplier management & launch change management will be Carsten Kirchholtes. In his new role, Kirchholtes will be responsible for leading and driving targets and continuous improvement in all aspects of supplier management and launch change management for DTNA.

“Carsten is a seasoned executive who has proven himself in the oversight of the complex area of sourcing and procurement,” said Roger Nielsen, chief operating officer, Daimler Trucks North America. “His solid knowledge base of the commercial vehicle supply network will facilitate his success in his new role.”

Succeeding Kirchholtes as general manager of procurement at DTNA will be Christoph Mertens who will be moving from his role as head of Daimler Trucks Vehicle Modules and Platform Management in Stuttgart, Germany. In addition to his primary responsibilities for overseeing procurement in the NAFTA region, Mertens will also be responsible for leading and driving the global procurement activities of the Cab Commodity Group.

“We welcome Christoph to the Daimler Trucks North America family,” continued Nielsen. “Daimler Trucks North America is in the enviable position to be able to share human resources with Daimler Trucks Global Network. Christoph brings global experience to procurement and will be able to draw upon his proven experience around the world to enhance our procurement activities in North America.”

Sungsoo Lee, currently plant manager of Saltillo Truck Manufacturing, has been named general manager of operations planning and quality management. In his new position, Lee will be responsible for directing and leading the activities of Customer Application Engineering, Quality Management, Six Sigma and Production Planning.

“Sungsoo’s background operating DTNA’s exceptional facility in Saltillo, Mexico was an ideal proving ground for the position of General Manager of Operations Planning & Quality Management,” said Nielsen. “The Saltillo facility has been recognized as state-of-the-art and has been awarded as a top performing plant amongst all Daimler facilities. Sungsoo will bring his lean manufacturing experience and his relentless pursuit of quality to the entire DTNA manufacturing network.”

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