15 YEARS AGO: Richard Brenner Becomes Amarr President

© 2008 Door & Access Systems Publish Date: Spring 2008 Author: Tom Wadsworth Page 62


Richard Brenner Becomes Amarr President

On July 1, 1993, 15 years ago, Richard Brenner became the president of Amarr Garage Doors at the young age of 29. His father, Herb, had been Amarr’s chairman since the 1960s, beginning a half century of Brenner family leadership in the garage door industry.

Richard’s garage door career began when he was 10 years old. He assembled hardware boxes and, later, wood doors and track. In 1985, at age 22, after he had graduated from the University of Georgia with a degree in business, he managed Amarr Door Centers in Nashville, Tenn., Riviera Beach, Fla., and Birmingham, Ala. In 1988, he became the company’s first director of marketing.

Bill Neal, an Amarr veteran since 1952, was serving as company president. When Neal retired in 1990, Herb stepped into the president’s position, and Richard was promoted to vice president of Eastern operations.

Richard’s performance and progress continued at a fast pace: he was promoted to executive vice president in 1992. A year later, his father stepped aside, and Richard became company president.

Update: Less than a year later, on Feb. 23, 1994, Herb Brenner died unexpectedly of lung cancer. All of Richard’s accelerated training and management experience proved to be fortunate, as he was left as the sole leader of Amarr at the age of 30.

Having management responsibility at an early age helped Richard hone his management skills. He would later become Amarr’s chief executive officer and be elected as the president of DASMA, all in 2002.

In addition to these leadership roles, Richard also serves on the board of several nonprofit organizations, including the Wake Forest University Medical School. He was the cofounder of ABC of North Carolina, a school that teaches young children with autism. In 2004, Brenner was honored as a national finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year Award.