TORRANCE, CAFleet Financials has narrowed its Fleet Executive of the Year finalists down to three. The winner will be announced April 10 in Dallas. The award, co-sponsored by The CEI Group, was created to recognize an experienced and proficient fleet manager who has demonstrated special business acumen in developing and executing key management policies in all areas. The finalists are:


Mike Dingman

Since joining the ValleyCrest Companies in 1979, Dingman has managed the integration of fleets from 15-20 company acquisitions, including four major acquisitions in the last four years. The fleet is highly diversified, and Dingman has efficiently managed its continually changing profile while containing costs. He cites his ability to build key relationships with suppliers and fleet management firm ARI as critical to the fleet’s successful operations. Active in industry and community organizations, Dingman has lectured at numerous industry-related conferences and appeared on expert panels. In addition, he has authored several articles for industry publications.


Title: Senior VP, Asset Management

Company: ValleyCrest Companies

Total vehicles: 6,500+

Staff supervised: 6

Years in fleet: 24 years


Charles Schott

Following two corporate acquisitions that more than doubled the company’s fleet, Schott directed the integration of the new fleets into a single global fleet program covering 150 countries worldwide. He instituted and continues to direct a five-member cross-functional global fleet team that effectively leverages Pfizer’s operations, vendor relationships, and policy practices. With Pfizer’s regional presidents, the team aligned regional fleet objectives with annual productivity and cost containment operations plans. Schott’s Global Fleet Team has established supplier partnerships to support consolidations, standardization, and cost containment, a recognized best practice.


Title: Strategic Procurement Director

Company: Pfizer, Inc.

Total vehicles: 37,000+

Staff supervised: 2

Years in fleet: 8


Tuffy Williams

Undertaking what he saw as an “intelligent risk,” Tuffy supervised a significant culture change in Coca-Cola Company’s fleet operations, shifting from an in-house fleet manager to a partnership with a fleet management services provider to handle all fleet-related activities and decisions. His leadership helped reduce fleet expenses by more than $3.5 million. In 2004, he leveraged his provider partnership’s services to achieve a $900,000 reduction in document output expense and is positioned for an additional $1.5 reduction in 2005. His contributions to the GE Commercial Finance Fleet Services advisory board have focused on fleet technology solutions, including dashboard metrics, right time to sell, and employee vehicle purchases.


Title: Manager, Distribution & Document Output Services

Company: The Coca-Cola Company

Total vehicles: 1,100

Staff supervised: 0

Years in fleet: 3