A Leader in Both The Public and Private Sector
As the CEO of Quadratec, I sit on the front lines of our industry’s battle against counterfeit goods and understand what it takes to grow sales in this newly challenging environment. At Quadratec, we sell hundreds of brands of off-road parts and accessories to end consumers, retail stores, and installers. We work in partnership with those brands to identify, attack, and outmaneuver counterfeiters. We also sell our own brands and face these same challenges as we develop and innovate our own products. This means I have been able to crowdsource a tool belt of strategies and tactics to successfully tackle the counterfeit challenge and am ready to help our board supercharge its ability to do the same.
My unique career path has qualified and prepared me to take on legislators at the Federal, state, and local levels. The battles involving counterfeit goods, navigating the trade dispute, and protecting our freedom to create parts for complex and highly-regulated automobiles will be fought in Washington, D.C. As a manager at the Department of Homeland Security, I spent countless hours negotiating with lobbyists regarding new and pending legislation, preparing for hearings on Capitol Hill, and navigating complex economic impact studies all while balancing public perception and the need to get elected or reelected. After 9/11, I was tasked to redesign and launch the system responsible for preventing any additional terrorists from receiving flight training in the United States. Today, that system is still protecting our skies and is an example of my public sector prowess.
A Voice for Distributors and Retailers
Our industry is changing fast and SEMA must be able to adapt to these changes as quickly as the changes are occurring. Mass media is shrinking, investment company ownership is rising, companies are consolidating and vertically integrating, and legislative attacks are increasing. We must be sure we are preparing to fight tomorrow’s battles, not yesterday’s wars.
SEMA is a large volunteer-powered organization and speeding up our ability to change requires leadership with broad and relevant experience. My background of board membership in organizations ranging from the university setting to local little leagues brings an understanding of what works and does not work when moving volunteer and non-profit organizations forward. These special organizations require a great mastery of leadership through teamwork and influencing. The diversity of my leadership experience speaks to my ability to thrive in such an environment.
An Advocate for American Companies
The influx of counterfeit aftermarket products is not only the most complex issue facing SEMA but also has the largest potential impact to our businesses. My unique experiences and qualifications make me an excellent leader to tackle this challenge. It was not that long ago that a SEMA member could develop new and innovative products, secure the intellectual property (IP) associated with those assets, bring them to market, and focus on marketing and customer service.
Today, these assets are under constant threat from counterfeit copies. With the accelerating rise of online marketplaces, increasing price pressure, and shortening consumer attention spans, our “system” has little appetite for protecting IP and rewarding innovation. Too many companies must forgo research and development, marketing, and customer service investments so they can focus on defending the IP that is the foundation of their businesses.
Family Business, Family Values
While I am proud of my leadership qualifications and credentials, at my core I am a father, husband, son, brother, volunteer, and passionate enthusiast who wants to give back. I am an extremely fortunate person and I owe so much to my family, SEMA, and this industry that has given me everything. Being a SEMA board member is my chance to return the favor.
You can find me many weekends and evenings coaching my two boys’ sports teams and volunteering on the boards and committees of the leagues in which they play. My sons’ innocence, energy, and natural compassion inspire me and I believe I learn more from them than they do from me.
The greatest challenge to all family businesses is to remember that family comes first. Without family, there is no business. My father, mother, sister, and me all work together to abide by this fragile fact. As we do, our family bleeds into our business. Quadratec’s amazing success story is as much about the Wentz family as it is off-road parts and accessories. We took frightening risks, worked hard, enjoyed our wins, and survived our losses with my father and mother leading the way. We have lived the true American Dream. Our family now extends well beyond those with our last name and includes all the employees and partners who helped us get where we are today. I humbly hope that serving on the SEMA board would help me to repay them all.
Need more convincing? Hear from some of Ted’s colleagues below.