FRANKLIN, TN - Randall McCathren has been named COO of Auction Academy, a continuing education program developed by TPC Management Company (TPC) for professionals in the auction industry.  The announcement was made by Pierre Pons, TPC President.  McCathren will oversee the Auction Academy's inaugural offering which begins in May:  the Next Generation Owner course, a two-year training and development program for the sons and daughters of today's Independent auction owners.

McCathren brings more than 30 years of experience in the auto leasing industry to his new role with Auction Academy.  As President of BLC Associates, he is regarded as a national expert on consumer vehicle leasing and financing issues, with particular focus on vehicle remarketing, risk management, economic analysis and regulatory compliance. Since 1993 he has also served as Managing Director of the Association of Consumer Vehicle Lessors (ACVL), representing the major captive finance companies, banks and independent lessors. McCathren holds a B.S. in Engineering and Applied Science from Yale University and a law degree from the University of California at Berkeley, and has taught at the University of Texas and Vanderbilt Law Schools.

"I am very excited to announce that Randall McCathren has agreed to head the Auction Academy," said Pons.  "I have known and worked with Randall for many years and have tremendous respect for his understanding of management practices and his industry expertise.  Those who will be participating in the Auction Academy will reap the benefits of working with a giant in the industry, gaining an understanding of the business that will be invaluable to them throughout their careers."

Auction Academy provides a training and development experience for automotive auction professionals, structured like an Executive MBA program.  With tracks for the next generation of auction leaders as well as for current auction leadership, Auction Academy's two-year programs are designed to enhance essential skill sets, promote best practices, and yield better auction performance.



"While a person seeking to build skills in auction management and operations can get some training through various industry conferences, there is no formal, rigorous mechanism for academic learning that we believe would be valuable to the industry," said McCathren. "A future auction owner can certainly get a graduate degree in business, through which he or she can acquire a good set of skills, but it does not include the hands-on experience that is needed to run an auction in today's increasingly complex and competitive environment.   Our faculty at Auction Academy will be drawn from expert practitioners from around the country, and the curriculum will include site visits, field trips and work with experts in all areas of the industry as we cover the A-to-Z of auction operations."

"When we introduced Auction Academy to the Independent Auction Group at last year's NAAA convention in Chicago, we received an overwhelmingly positive response," said Pons. "Auction owners feel there is a strong need for more formal training for the young people coming into the industry, as well as continuing education for those who have been working in this industry for many years. More than a casual knowledge is required to succeed in today's competitive marketplace, and we're delighted to offer the Auction Academy as a top-level training and development experience."

TPC Management Company, headquartered in Franklin, TN has provided consulting and executive recruiting services to the automotive industry since 1996.