After an extensive nationwide search conducted by the NATM Board of Directors (Scott Hymas – R.C Willey, Gregg Richard – P.C. Richard, Marty Hartunian – ABC Warehouse, and Mike Abt – Abt Appliances), the NATM Buying Corporation announced today the hiring of John Riddle as the organization’s new Executive Director.
Riddle becomes only the fourth Executive Director in NATM’s 53-year history. In his new role, Riddle will lead this elite group of retailers, helping them navigate and thrive amid the ever-evolving challenges presented by the retail landscape. Founded in 1970, NATM coordinates buying and merchandizing strategies as well as provides a forum for its members to exchange ideas and best practices. Over the years, NATM has been recognized as the leading buying group in the industry.
Riddle will take the reins at NATM beginning May 1, 2023. He is currently the CEO Howard’s, one of California’s largest independent appliance retailers. A recognized retail and manufacturing growth expert for more than 40 years, Riddle came to Howard’s after retiring from LG as the Senior Vice President of Home Appliances & Air Solutions USA where he led the company during a period of unprecedented growth and market share. A graduate of York College in Pennsylvania, Riddle worked at Maytag for more than 20 years, as well as Philips, Fleetwood Homes, Electrolux, and Hisense USA.
“I have very much enjoyed my time at Howard’s, since joining the Board of Directors in July 2018,” said Riddle. “The opportunity to work at Howard’s, in the business I grew up in, was tremendously energizing for me. Any success we have had is due to our superb employee owners and the leaders who helped me over the last five years.”
Riddle will stay at Howard’s through the end of April to ensure a smooth transition. As a result of this timing, Jerry Satoren, who in October announced his intention to retire at the end of this year, has agreed to stay on board through May 1, 2023.
Satoren said, “NATM’s membership is comprised of a very special group of individuals. These relationships, some spanning 30 years, have become deeply personal for me. Knowing that the group will be handed off to someone as high caliber and high character as John Riddle brings great comfort, and I am more than happy to stay on a few extra months.”
“NATM is a group I grew up admiring,” said Riddle. “Their leadership and members were the top-of-the- top in the CE and Major Appliance industry. NATM always understood the importance of display of product, professional sales staff, and high quality delivery and installation. As a vendor, I understood NATM’s strategic importance in almost all the major markets of the United States. I’m looking forward to building on the success and history of NATM, with all its members and our vendor partners.”
With respect to the transition Hymas commented, “This is an exciting time for our industry and NATM specifically. It has been an honor to work with Jerry Satoren. He is the ultimate professional and has done a superb job in leading our organization. He has taken this organization to a new level and set the foundation for future growth.
Hymas continued, “ John Riddle is the right person for this job at this time. He not only brings senior leadership experience in the CE and Major Appliance Industry, but also has tremendous experience leading a large retail organization and being on the front line with customers. We are excited and look forward to seeing where John’s leadership will propel the group in the years to come.”