Board of Directors
Larry D. De Shon is president and chief executive officer of Avis Budget Group, Inc., a leading global provider of vehicle rental services. Prior to this position, he served as president and chief operating officer.
Mr. De Shon was previously president, International, Avis Budget Group. In this role, he was responsible for overseeing the Company’s Avis, Budget, Zipcar, Payless, Maggiore and Apex businesses in Europe, the Middle East, Africa (EMEA), Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
Mr. De Shon joined Avis Budget Group in 2006 and has previously overseen the Company’s operations in Europe, the Middle East and Africa as president, EMEA and operations in the United States as executive vice president, domestic operations.
Before joining Avis Budget Group, Mr. De Shon was senior vice president of airport operations at United Airlines, Inc. As the head of United’s worldwide airport operations, he oversaw ground operations, logistics, safety, security, customer processing and service, product development and internal communications, leading an organization of 23,000 employees in 29 countries. He began his 28-year career with the airline carrier as a customer service representative and advanced to hold numerous positions of increasing responsibility during his tenure.
He received bachelor degrees in both communications and sociology from the University of Missouri, Kansas City.
Leonard Coleman was a Director of Cendant Corporation from December 1997-2006 and Presiding Director at executive sessions of the Cendant Board since February 2003. Mr. Coleman was a Director of HFS from April 1997 until December 1997. From 1999 to December 2005, Mr. Coleman was a Senior Advisor to Major League Baseball. Mr. Coleman was President of The National League of Professional Baseball Clubs from 1994 to 1999, having previously served since 1992 as Executive Director, Market Development of Major League Baseball. Mr. Coleman is a Director of the following corporations which file reports pursuant to the Securities Exchange Act of 1934 (the "Exchange Act"): Omnicom Group Inc., H.J. Heinz Company, Aramark Corporation and Electronic Arts Inc.
Brian Choi was appointed to the Avis Budget Group Board of Directors in January 2016. Mr. Choi has been a financial analyst for his entire career. Mr. Choi is currently a partner at SRS Investment Management, an independent global equities firm, and is responsible for the firm’s investments in the auto-rental sector. Prior to joining SRS, he was at Metalmark Capital, a leading private equity firm. Prior to that, he worked as an Investment Banker in the Leveraged Finance Group of Lehman Brothers. Mr. Choi received his A.B. in economics from Harvard College.
Mary Choksi has been a Director of Avis Budget Group since March 2007. Since 1987, Ms. Choksi has been a Founding Partner and Managing Director of Strategic Investment Group, where she is a key contributor to the development of Strategic's overall investment policy, with extensive expertise in non-U.S. investments. Ms. Choksi is also a Founding Partner and Managing Director of Strategic's sister company, Emerging Markets Management LLC. Strategic and Emerging Markets Management together manage approximately $35 billion in assets for institutional and private investors.
Jeff Fox has been a Director of Avis Budget Group since July 2013. Mr. Fox brings significant leadership and executive management experience to our Board of Directors as a principal of The Circumference Group LLC, an investment and advisory firm, which he founded in 2009. Mr. Fox also serves as non-executive Chairman of the Board of Convergys Corporation, where he also held numerous leadership positions, including President and Chief Executive Officer from 2010 to November 2012, and then Executive Chairman until April 2013. Mr. Fox worked for Alltel Corporation as Chief Operating Officer from 2007 through 2008, and as Group President from 2003 until 2007. Prior to joining Alltel, Mr. Fox worked in investment banking for ten years with Stephens Inc., preceded by two years with Merrill Lynch, specializing in mergers and acquisitions advisory services.
Lynn Krominga has been a director since October 2006. Ms. Krominga is an attorney and business executive. Since 1999, Ms. Krominga has been a consultant to private equity and venture capital firms and to start-up and early stage technology companies and served as chief executive officer of Fashion Wire Daily, Inc. in 2002. From 1981 to 1999, Ms. Krominga held various senior executive and legal offices at Revlon, including President, Licensing Division from 1992 to 1998. Prior to that, Ms. Krominga was an attorney at American Express Company and at Cleary, Gottlieb, Steen & Hamilton LLP. Ms. Krominga serves as Chairman of the Board, Member of the Audit Committee and Member of the Compensation Committee of Sunrise Senior Living, Inc., which files reports pursuant to the Exchange Act.
Glenn Lurie has been a director of Avis Budget Group since May 2018. Mr. Lurie has been President, Chief Executive Officer and a director of Synchronoss Technologies, Inc., which files reports pursuant to the Exchange Act, since November 2017.
Prior to joining Synchronoss, Mr. Lurie was employed by AT&T for 27 years and was President and Chief Executive Officer of AT&T Mobility and Consumer Operations when he retired in September of 2017. Mr. Lurie helped usher in the smartphone era by leading negotiations for AT&T with Apple for the first iPhone and then for the first iPad. He built three groundbreaking businesses at AT&T: the Internet of Things (IoT) business – bringing wireless connectivity to tablets, cars, connected cities and consumer electronics; Digital Life – AT&T’s home automation and security business; and the launch of Aio Wireless – now Cricket Wireless, the company’s industry leading prepaid flanker brand. At AT&T, Mr. Lurie served in a variety of leadership roles, including as President and Chief Executive Officer of Mobility and Consumer Operations from 2016 to 2017, President and Chief Executive Officer of AT&T Mobility from 2014 to 2016, President of Emerging Enterprises and Partnerships Organization from 2011 to 2014 and President of Emerging Devices Organization (now IoT Organization) from 2008 to 2011.
Mr. Lurie received a B.A. in Business/Marketing from Seattle Pacific University.
Mr. Mestre has been a Director of Avis Budget Group since July 2008. Mr. Mestre is Vice Chairman of Evercore Partners, an independent investment banking and investment management firm, and is responsible for the firm's corporate advisory business.
Prior to joining Evercore, Mr. Mestre served as Chairman of Citigroup's Global Investment Bank and, prior to that, he spent six years as head of investment banking and six years as co-head of mergers and acquisitions at Salomon Smith Barney. As head of investment banking, Mr. Mestre led Salomon's business integration efforts arising from the various mergers that led to the creation of Citigroup. Prior to joining Salomon in 1977, he practiced law at Cleary Gottlieb.
Mr. Mestre is a member of the executive committee and past Chairman of the Board of WNYC, New York's public radio stations, and he is Chairman of the Board of Cold Spring Harbor Laboratory, one of the nation's leading cancer, neuroscience and genetic research centers. Born in Havana, Mr. Mestre is a 1970 summa cum laude graduate of Yale and a 1973 cum laude graduate of Harvard Law School.
Jagdeep Pahwa has been a director of Avis Budget Group since April 2018. Mr. Pahwa has been the President of SRS Investment Management, LLC since 2017 and has led SRS’s private equity business since 2006.
Previously, Mr. Pahwa worked at McKinsey & Company in the U.S. and India, where he led client engagements in the telecom, technology and real estate sectors. Prior thereto, Mr. Pahwa worked in the Mergers & Acquisitions group of Lehman Brothers in New York.
Mr. Pahwa received a B.T. in Chemical Engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Dehli, an M.S. in Chemical Engineering from Princeton University and an M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
F. Robert Salerno was named vice chairman of Avis Budget Group in June 2010. Prior to this, Mr. Salerno served as president and chief operating officer (COO) of Avis Budget Group, overseeing domestic and international operations for the Avis and Budget brands.
Mr. Salerno was named COO in October 2005 following the announcement by Cendant Corporation to separate into four independent, publicly traded companies, one of which is Avis Budget Group. From 2003 to 2005 he led Cendant's vehicle rental services division as chief executive officer after serving as president and chief operating officer of Avis Rent A Car from 1996 through 2002, and then as president and COO of Cendant Car Rental Group from November 2002 to June 2003. He was appointed director of Avis Budget Group following the Cendant separation in 2006, and has served on the Company's Board since then.
Mr. Salerno's entire business career has been in the vehicle rental industry, having served in a series of managerial and executive positions of increasing responsibility with Avis after starting his career with another car rental company. He was appointed vice president of Avis' eastern region in 1982 and vice president of zone development in that same year. He was promoted to vice president of field operations in 1987, and in July 1990 was named senior vice president and general manager of Avis. In 1995, he was named executive vice president of operations.
He earned a bachelor's degree from Marquette University in 1972.
Francis J. Shammo has been a director of Avis Budget Group since May 2018. Mr. Shammo was the Executive Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Verizon Communications, Inc. from November 2010 until November 2016, and retired from Verizon at the end of 2016. After joining Bell Atlantic Corporation in 1989, which merged with GTE Corporation in 2000 to form Verizon, he held positions of increasing responsibility in finance, mergers and acquisitions, logistics, facilities, regional operations, and planning. His prior positions include President and Chief Executive Officer of Verizon Telecom and Business, Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer of Verizon Business, President—West Area of Verizon Wireless, and Vice President and Controller of Verizon Wireless.
Since 2015, Mr. Shammo has been a director of Unum Group.
Mr. Shammo received a B.S. in Accounting from Philadelphia University and an M.B.A from LaSalle University.
Carl Sparks has been a director of Avis Budget Group since April 2018. Mr. Sparks was the Chief Executive Officer and a director of Academic Partnerships, an online service provider for higher education, from 2016 to 2017. From 2011 to 2014, Mr. Sparks was the Chief Executive Officer of Travelocity Global.
Mr. Sparks was also employed by Gilt Groupe, serving as its Chief Marketing Officer in 2009 and its President from 2010 to 2011. Prior to joining Gilt Groupe, Mr. Sparks served in a variety of leadership roles at Expedia Inc. from 2004 to 2009, including as Senior Vice President, Marketing and Retail Operations at Hotels.com from 2004 to 2006, Chief Marketing Officer at Expedia.com from 2006 to 2007, and General Manager at Hotels.com USA, Latin America & Canada from 2008 to 2009. Earlier, Mr. Sparks served as Vice President of Direct Business and Brand at Capital One Financial Corp., and also served in senior marketing and strategy roles at Guinness & Co., PepsiCo Inc., and The Boston Consulting Group.
Mr. Sparks has been a director of Dunkin’ Brands Group, Inc. since 2013. Mr. Sparks is also currently serving as a director of ActionIQ, Inc., an enterprise software company.
Mr. Sparks received a B.S. in Engineering, Mechanical and Aerospace Engineering from Princeton University, graduating Summa Cum Laude, and a M.B.A. from Harvard Business School.
Sanoke Viswanathan was appointed to the Avis Budget Group Board of Directors in March 2016. Mr. Viswanathan is chief administrative officer of JPMorgan Chase & Co.'s Corporate & Investment Bank ("CIB"), overseeing Technology, Operations and Controls. Previously, Mr. Viswanathan was head of Strategy, Marketing and New Business Development for CIB and head of Corporate Strategy for JPMorgan Chase. Prior to joining JPMorgan Chase, Mr. Viswanathan was a partner at McKinsey & Co. and co-head of its global corporate and investment banking practice, serving financial institutions in Asia, Europe and North America on strategy, organization and risk management topics.