- XPO has named J. Wes Frye, a retired longtime Old Dominion Freight Line finance executive, to its board of directors, the company announced last week.
- Frye spent 30 years at Old Dominion, 18 of them as CFO, before his retirement in 2015. His addition to the XPO board grew the board’s size to nine members, seven of whom are independent.
- “Wes Frye’s name is synonymous with LTL operational excellence,” XPO founder and executive chairman Brad Jacobs said in a statement. “He brings a rare mix of industry expertise and financial acumen that will be a powerful asset to both our board and our company.”
Frye brings decades of LTL experience to XPO’s board, and his appointment reflects a trend in the trucking industry of companies seeking to hire talent from their direct competitors for their top ranks.
While many other trucking carriers were slashing prices during the Great Recession in 2008 and 2009, Frye was among the leaders who positioned Old Dominion for success, according to “Helping the World Keep Promises,” a corporate history.
Instead of cutting its prices and workforce, the carrier kept prices stable, hired salespeople and invested in capacity.
“We actually continued buying additional service centers and investing in systems that allowed us to give better service, better transit times, and lower cargo claims,” Frye said in an interview in the book. “I think that set the stage for differentiating Old Dominion in the marketplace with those investments.”
XPO credited Frye with being “instrumental in creating ODFL’s customer-centric culture” and executing initiatives that stimulated about $3 billion in revenue growth for Old Dominion.
He also was key in organizing the carrier’s finances to prepare it to go public in 1991, and he served as an investor liaison, the Old Dominion history notes.
Frye established the company’s incentive compensation structure and introduced software applications for business intelligence, forecasting, pricing and KPI management, XPO said.
Prior to his retirement, Frye was awarded Best CFO in Transportation in the Institutional Investors’ 2011 All-America Executive Team awards.