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Nexstop for Nextel Exec? AMS

Treasurer at wireless company moving on to tech consultancy; served as Nextel's acting CFO for a bit. Also: Former Eastman-Kodak vet goes to Hubbell.
Jennifer CaplanFebruary 25, 2002

John Brittain Jr. new CFO at American Management Systems, technology consulting firm located in Fairfax, Virginia. Brittain takes over from Ronald Schillereff, who’s served as company CFO and treasurer since February 1999. Schillereff appointed to newly created position of EVP and director of IR. A promotion? Hard to tell…

Brittain joins AMS from Nextel Communications, the struggling wireless services giant. He joined Nextel in 1999 as VP and treasurer, and became acting CFO in 2000 when former finance chief Steven Shindler was named CEO of Nextel International. Prior to Nextel, Brittain was SVP and worldwide treasurer of Sotheby’s Holdings, the famed auction house. He’s a graduate of Tufts University, where he obtained a degree in economics.

“John has an exceptional track in the capital markets, including raising $16 billion of public capital over the last three years,” says Alfred Mockett, AMS CEO. Should also be noted that Nextel fueled much of its network buildout by borrowing money, and that the company is currently struggling to service a whopping $16 billion debt load.

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For his part, Schillereff joined AMS from EDS Australia, second-largest IT services company Down Under. Was managing director at EDS since July 1997… Schillereff graduated from U.S. Air Force Academy…

William Tolley the new CFO at Hubbell Inc., maker of electronic products based in Orange, Connecticut, mall capital of universe. Tolley reports to company CEO Timothy Powers, previous CFO at company… Tolley ex-Eastman-Kodak, where he held several finance jobs. Also served as CFO at packaging company Chesapeake Corp.… Hubbell’s new finance chief holds MBA in finance from Wharton, and BS in mechanical engineering and economics from Tufts University. Interesting double major…

Hubbell reported $1.3 billion in sales last year. But profits fell big time, from $138 million to $48 million. “Each quarter of 2001 proved more challenging,” concedes CEO Powers. No kidding. In Q4, Hubbell took $62 million pretax charge. The reason? To reduce inventory and pay severance to laid off workers… Still, cost cutting should save company $70 million in annual costs. Layoffs alone cut Hubbell’s workforce by 20 percent. Company now sitting on $90 million in free cash. “As we’ve noted before,” says Powers, “the task is to manage for the realities…”

Donald Swistowicz, CFO at First Midwest Bancorp, retiring after 21 years at company. First Midwest provides commercial banking, trust, investment management, and related financial services. Based in Itasca, Illinois—stone’s throw from Chicago—First Midwest has approximately $5.7 billion in assets… Michael Scudder, the current CFO at First Midwest Bank, one of company’s subsidiaries, will replace Swistowicz… Scudder was chosen as Swistowicz’s successor a year ago. That’s when Swistowicz announced he was packing it in… Scudder inheriting a good situation. First Midwest reported record net income of $82 million last year, up from $76 million year before…

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