A Fond Bon Voyage to Tom Rollo
By Karen Pradhan
After 40 years in the parking industry and more than 10 years at Skidata Inc., President and CEO Tom Rollo retired at the end of 2015.
The industry icon has shared his talents leading such companies as Federal APD, Scheidt & Bachmann, and, lastly, Skidata. Rollo was notably already in retirement when he was approached by Robert Weiskopf, CSO at Skidata AG, to lead the U.S.A. team, which he joined in 2004.
Rollo built the wholly owned subsidiary into what it is today, growing it from 15 employees when he joined to more than 200 today. He has been described as “a proven master at implementing business processes and procedures.”
During his tenure, Rollo was instrumental in the successful acquisition of leading distributor Harstad Controls, as well as other growth opportunities. A crowning achievement was the long-sought-after project of DFW International Airport.
Chief Sales Officer Weiskopf stated: “For me, and for Skidata, it was fortunate that Tom was very bored with his rose plants at the time, and that he was still amped up about winning this one big project: Dallas/Fort Worth.
“He had wanted to win the airport [contract] for a long time. With Skidata, it had to work – and it did,” Weiskopf said. “In 2010, [we] won the contract for equipping DFW. And for Tom it was clear – when the airport was equipped with a modern parking system, it would be time for him to retire.”
Rollo’s retirement marks the departure of “an impressive personality, who has played parts in great things, not only at Skidata. He is a member of a network that has significantly influenced and designed the parking business in America,” Weiskopf said, “and I am proud to call him a friend.
“Tom isn’t only great in his work, but also in private ways – always there for others, and always willing to share his knowledge and offer his assistance,” Weiskopf said. “Dear Tom, thank you for everything you’ve done at Skidata, and I wish you all the best for the coming years!”
Alexander Christl, the new President and CEO at Skidata Inc., added: “I appreciate the opportunity to succeed Tom and to lead such a well-positioned company with such a great team. Especially during the transition period, Tom was always very supportive and gave me the opportunity to learn from his great experience and personality.”
Always a mentor for others, Rollo has been called a “guiding light for many with his open-door policy to all, his support, guidance, and unwavering high moral ethics.”
Albeit in any conversation with him, due diligence would be required on the part of the listener to vet his “Rollo-isms,” such as ‘stinkin’ thinkin’,’ ‘mouse nuts,’ and the like – unless a “career-limiting experience” was imminent.
We at Skidata Inc. wish Tom well as he looks forward to dedicating more time to his extended family, fishing, tending his roses, and donning that leather jacket and bandana for a long cruise on one of his motorcycles with his lovely wife, Susan.
Contact Karen Pradhan, Marketing Manager for Skidata Inc., at Karen.firstname.lastname@example.org.