At the Helm
Eva Hotard was recently selected as President and Chief Executive Officer of the Trailways Transportation System, Inc., from a pool of 400 applicants. Hotard, who has been in the bus business for many years and is a talented leader, was chosen because of her experience and leadership skills. Gale Ellsworth, former President and CEO of Trailways, described Hotard as a "warm, solid, keen and savvy businesswoman."
Trailways comprises 66 independently owned and operated motorcoach companies located throughout North America and Europe. The organization maintains a close working relationship with industry-related suppliers and vendors, as well as with other tour and travel service entities.
Hotard and her eight siblings all worked in the family business, Hotard Coaches. In 1984, she was elected the company's General Manager; she became President and CEO in 1993. In that role she was responsible for the company's operating entities, two leasing entities and a partnership with land holdings. Under her leadership, Hotard Coaches grew from a three-vehicle operation to a fleet of more than 100 vehicles, and became one of the largest travel services companies in the Gulf South. During her tenure, the company also expanded into other strategic areas.
In 2005, Hotard became a management consultant and executive coach. As a consultant, she focused on working with owners and CEOs of small and medium-size businesses to transform their companies into high-performance organizations. "It's a challenging transition for companies to grow from an entrepreneurial-style organization to a well-managed, styled organization," she said.
Hotard plans to implement new, innovative ideas and looks forward to being part of this long-running organization.
"The 80-year-old Trailways brand is very powerful. It's a tremendous strength," Hotard said. "So, building on the brand and leveraging resources are what I want to concentrate on. A strong brand helps everyone on the Trailways team."
Written by Lisa Stickler, staff writer for Groups Today magazine.
Photo courtesy of Trailways Transportation System, Inc.