The Association’s annual Board election will open in December 2020. For this election cycle, NTEA will be seeking candidates to fill four seats on its Board of Directors (see candidate profiles below). Openings include four seats for a Distributor or Manufacturer member serve to three-year terms starting March 2020. The election process will be held electronically, with links to the online ballot emailed to Distributor and Manufacturer members in December.
NTEA is governed by its Association Bylaws under leadership of a member-elected Board. Each Director completes a three-year term, and a Board-appointed president & CEO oversees day-to-day administration of NTEA. For a list of current Directors, visit ntea.com/board.
Four of the following Distributor/Manufacturer candidates will be elected.
There is no Distributor/Manufacturer class restriction as the minimum requirement of two Distributor and Manufacturer Directors each is already represented on the Board.
Pat Godwin Jr.
Godwin Mfg. Co. Inc.
NTEA member since 1992
Pat Godwin Jr. joined the family business in his youth, growing his knowledge and experience through the years to become a shareholder and corporate president.
He is active within the community, serving as a member and past chairperson of Harnett County Economic Development Council; board member of National Institute of Metalworking Skills at Western Harnett High School; board member of Harnett County Business/Education Partnership; past president of Rotary Club of Dunn; alumni and past board member of Leadership Harnett; past board member of Harnett County Properties Corp.; and trustee and executive board member of Heritage Bible College. He also participates in various local and regional philanthropic and social organizations, and is a member of Long Branch Pentecostal Free Will Baptist Church.
Pat believes, through Board service, he can offer direction and insights that may be beneficial to the Association and membership. He believes NTEA can be a key driver of positive change, helping the industry adjust to unprecedented impacts of the pandemic.
Industry issues of greatest significance to Pat
- Helping NTEA plan for the immediate future, including changes to events, meetings and member interaction.
- Communicating to chassis OEMs the need for advisory panels to suggest engineering designs and new products more conducive to industry needs.
- Helping NTEA members move forward with innovative strategies and concepts to adjust to the current business climate.
Vice President, General Manager TE Division
Unicell Body Company
Rochester, New York
NTEA member since 2016
Jason Lehman began his work truck industry career in 2006 as customer service representative at the Masterack Division of Leggett & Platt Commercial Vehicle Products. Throughout his 10 years with the company, he worked in various areas — including fleet and government sales, distributor sales, and distributor client and partner relations — before becoming vice president of sales in 2014. He joined Unicell Body Company in 2016 as vice president, general manager TE division.
Jason received a bachelor’s in elementary education from West Virginia University (Morgantown, West Virginia). He has volunteered in various community activities, serving as Komen Charlotte Race for the Cure committee member, Reynosa Mission Construction team leader, church elder, Outreach Committee member, and Vital Congregations team chair.
He’s interested in serving on the Board to give back to an industry that offered many opportunities for success as he grew from customer service to vice president. He envisions NTEA continuing to grow its industry training offerings and guidance on best practices, providing programs and initiatives to help companies adapt to rapid technological advancements and the latest commercial vehicle trends.
Industry issues of greatest significance to Jason
- Chassis and equipment lead times making it difficult to forecast, manage individual businesses and provide service customers deserve.
- Consolidation putting additional stress on smaller manufacturer and distributor organizations by forcing them to rely more on intangible resources to grow and prosper.
- Recruitment and retention of qualified employees.
Vice President of Engineering
The Knapheide Manufacturing Company
NTEA member since 1974
Chris Weiss has served as vice president of engineering at Knapheide Manufacturing since 2005. He was previously director of engineering at Federal Signal Corporation from 1995–2005.
He received a bachelor’s in aeronautical engineering from Purdue University (West Lafayette, Indiana), master’s in mechanical engineering from University of Utah (Salt Lake City, Utah) and master’s in business administration, operations management from DePaul University (Chicago, Illinois). Chris is a board member for Quincy Area Chamber of Commerce and Quincy Symphony Orchestra Association. He is an advisory board member for John Wood Community College, and former board member of West Central Illinois Big Brothers Big Sisters. He’s also a committee member and former chair of NTEA’s American Institute of Service Body Manufacturers, and former board member and chair of NTEA’s Green Truck Association.
Chris is interested in Board service to give back to the industry through knowledge sharing, collaboration and helping establish a solid future strategy and direction for the Association. He envisions NTEA continuing to evolve its three important roles — a voice to vehicle OEMs, government agencies and other associations; education provider; and networking hub for industry professionals.
Industry issues of greatest significance to Chris
- Continued skilled labor shortage and how to manage businesses with this constraint.
- New vehicle OEMs and technology, including the transition to broader electric vehicle adoption.
- Understanding and adapting to longer-term effects on the industry and how business is conducted post-COVID-19.
Phenix Truck Bodies & Van Equipment
NTEA member since 1991
Rick Abertini has worked at Phenix Enterprises since he was 17 years old. After graduating college and joining the business full-time, he has been involved in every aspect, from sales and marketing, operations and finance, to CEO (since 1998). He has watched Phenix grow from a small manufacturing company with five employees to a firm with over 130 team members.
He earned a bachelor’s in business administration from California State University, Long Beach (Long Beach, California). Rick has served on the board for a private elementary/middle school operated by his church, and volunteered for many years as coach, referee and referee coordinator for the church’s youth basketball league. He currently holds a corporate officer and treasurer role for a local high school basketball team booster club.
Rick is interested in NTEA Board service to be able to give back to the industry’s next generation, share lessons learned and work with other Board members to provide direction for the Association and membership. Going forward, he envisions supporting NTEA’s mission and vision with emphasis on expanded business and economic training, employee retention programs, and increased technical information related to changing vehicle drivetrain systems.
Industry issues of greatest concern to Rick
- How the changing state and federal regulatory environment affects the industry.
- Changes in vehicle power/drivetrain types being adopted by fleets.
- Shifts in industry demographics and customers served.
President Light Duty & EV Solutions
Fontaine Modification Co.
Charlotte, North Carolina
NTEA member since 1990
Mike Randolph began his industry career in 1985 as executive trainee, leasing and sales representative at Denver Freightliner/Trans-West Freightliner. In 1990, he took the role of marketing manager for Freightliner/DTNA, where he remained for 20 years. From 2010–2016, he served as regional fleet manager and VP of national accounts for Volvo Trucks North America. In 2017, he started as VP sales & marketing for Fontaine Fifth Wheel, and in 2020, became president, light duty & EV solutions at Fontaine Modification.
Mike received his bachelor’s in business administration from University of North Texas (Denton, Texas). He is active in his church, and mentors personnel for future development and succession planning.
He’s interested in Board service so he can share his 25 years of knowledge and contacts, and support the industry to the best of his ability. Mike envisions the future of NTEA as positioning members to embrace alternative fuel trends, including range extenders and electric vehicles.
Industry issues of greatest significance to Mike
- Developing processes to understand and capitalize on future sustainable trends.
- Attracting the next generation of industry personnel, with a focus on diversity, drive, common sense and mechanical aptitude.
- Continuing to focus on safety, especially in the work truck segment.
NTEA member since 2004
Adrian Soriano has been in the truck equipment industry for 28 years, starting in sales at Rockwell/Meritor in 1992 before moving to Sachs (now ZF). He then became an OEM and Tier 1 truck supplier consultant for McKinsey. From 2012–2016, he served as global director for refinish at PPG Industries. Adrian acquired Push-N-Pull in 2019 and became its president.
He received a master’s in industrial engineering from University of Buenos Aires (Buenos Aires, Argentina) and a master’s in business administration from Columbia University (New York City, New York). He is active in his community, organizing sports activities for kids in low-income neighborhoods and offering college admission support for minority students.
Adrian is interested in Board service so he can help other distributors, and the work truck industry in general, access valuable resources from NTEA to be better prepared for present and future challenges. He sees NTEA helping members identify future trends and facilitating access to tools that could be difficult to acquire by individual members but more available and affordable if done as a group through the Association.
Industry issues of greatest concern to Adrian
- Finding talented labor to support growth.
- Electrification and its impact on upfitters and the industry.
- Succession planning and generational transition.
Driverge Vehicle Innovations
NTEA member since 2000
Before becoming president of Driverge Vehicle Innovations (formerly TransitWorks) in 2018, Mark Minatel served as the company’s vice president of sales for two years. Previously, he was senior vice president of Dometic Corporation, and vice president commercial products at Brinly-Hardy (Cyclone Manufacturing). He also worked as brand manager, national training manager and sales manager at Dana Corporation.
Mark attended University of Dayton (Dayton, Ohio) and Butler University (Indianapolis, Indiana). He is active in many needs-based charities supporting disabled veterans and wheelchair communities and programs. He participates in Cleveland-area sports programs as a coach and coaching mentor, is involved in his church community, and is a local government volunteer.
He is interested in serving on the Board to share leadership and insight, and advance thoughtful, meaningful discussions to help solve the unprecedented challenges NTEA members will face in the coming years. Mark believes NTEA can advance its critical leadership position in the industry by continuing to offer resources for growth and evolution.
Industry issues of greatest significance to Mark
- Current and upcoming chassis technology advancements and changes.
- Safety and compliance of products, conversions and upfits.
- Industry educational offerings, talent recruitment and career advancement opportunities.