Bell Helicopter Textron picks up new leader
Bell Helicopter, a subsidiary of Textron Inc. and manufacturer of commercial and military helicopters, promoted John Garrison Jr. to president and chief executive officer, effective Aug. 1, according to the Forth Worth (Texas) Business Press
Garrison replaces Richard Millman, who took on the role in January 2007 and is retiring after 43 years with Fort Worth-based Bell Helicopter Textron.
Garrison had previously served as president of Textron’s Industrial segment, a role he took on in November 2007. He will continue to directly report to Textron President and Chief Operating Officer Scott Donnelly.
Before overseeing that segment, he was president of E-Z-GO, a Textron company dedicated to golf cars and utility vehicles.
Before joining Textron, Garrison was with Azurix Corporation, the water services division of Enron Corporation, and Case Corporation, a manufacturer of agricultural and construction equipment.
Bell Helicopters manufactures commercial and military helicopters and tiltrotor aircrafts. Bell's commercial helicopters seat up to 15 passengers and include models designed for transport, emergency medical services and search and rescue operations.
In this new leadership capacity, Garrison will be responsible for day-to-day operations and will have complete oversight of Bell Helicopters
“John is a seasoned executive and a proven strategic leader with vast experience in managing manufacturing businesses, serving global customers and bringing products to market,” said Donnelly in a company release.
Donnelly stated that in addition to Garrison’s military experience, his professional background makes him the perfect candidate to expand Bell Helicopters by supporting the company’s commercial customers as well as its military warfighters throughout the country.
Military Communications Manager Tom Dolney told WinmoEdge that Garrison has yet to discuss any personal priorities or plans as Bell Helicopters’ new leader, seeing as he is brand new on the job.
Our source said that the half of the company’s business is split evenly between commercial and military helicopters, with “a foot on each side of the fence”
“Within the commercial category there are a number of markets and Brian (Warren, advertising manager) is the one who can talk about how he advertises and markets in each industry segment, because they’re all different,” he said.
On the other side, Bell Helicopters can market to multiple services within the military, and Dolney said that the media spend depends on what type of mental framework they’re trying to use to market to each service.
Our source said that Bell Helicopters just entered into a new agency relationship with Dearborn, Mich.-based Team Detroit, and that this firm will handle the company’s advertising. He added that the company is “certainly always open to opportunities.”
According to The List database, Dallas-based T:M has served as Bell Helicopter’s agency of record since 1984.
The Nielsen Company reported that Bell Helicopter spent about $200,000 on media in 2008. About $180,000 was spent on cable television and about $20,000 was spent on outdoor ads.
Dolney said suggested that DV readers postpone reaching out to Garrison and Bell Helicopter for a couple of months until he has had an opportunity to get settled in his new job.
Bell Helicopter Textron, Inc.
600 East Hurst Boulevard
Hurst, TX 76053
President & Chief Operating Officer
John Garrison Jr.
President & Chief Executive Officer