Jon Mitchell Sonepar 1025

People on the Move - April 9, 2021

April 8, 2021
Executive appointments and Champion Fiberglass, Affiliated Distributors, NAED and news of an industry leader retiring at Sonepar.

Sonepar USA (Charleston, SC): Jon Mitchell, president - West Region (photo above), will be retiring in June after 50 years in the electrical market. In 1971, Mitchell says he received his first “real paycheck” from AMFAC when he was just 17 working in the warehouse. In 1986, he and his brother started their own company, Electrical Distributor Inc., which they later sold to QED, now a Sonepar company.

Mitchell joined Codale in 1986, where he worked closely with owner, Dale Holt, “a friend and mentor” for 20 years. When Codale sold to Sonepar in 2012, Mitchell transitioned to the Sonepar team becoming president of Codale, where he helped make sizable acquisitions that expanded Sonepar’s geographical reach and market share throughout the Intermountain West. In 2016, he became president of the West Region. He will remain on the Sonepar team until a successor is named.

Champion Fiberglass (Houston): Matt Fredericks joined the Champion Fiberglass team as regional sales manager for the Great Lakes region and all provinces in Canada. He comes to the company from a manufacturers’ representative agency in the midwestern United States, where he sold Champion Fiberglass conduit and other products into the electrical contractor and electrical utility markets.

Affiliated Distributors (AD): Wayne, PA: Marty McLaughlin joined AD as its first chief marketing officer. McLaughlin will collaborate with AD’s members and boards to identify new areas of added value for its community, beyond the core functions of a buying and marketing group.

McLaughlin most recently served as founder and owner of Mosaic Partners, a growth marketing and strategy consulting firm he started 20 years ago. He has acted as CMO and provided counsel to a range of organizations. Prior to founding Mosaic Partners, McLaughlin worked for accounting firm Andersen doing business consulting for 15 years. He earned both his bachelor’s degree and MBA from Widener University. McLaughlin was the driving force behind the Marketing Exchange, a Philadelphia-based community of marketing executives committed to the life-long pursuit of learning, contributing and thriving, which he launched in 2010.

Allterco Robotics US, (Las Vegas): This manufacturer of Shelly smart home products announced Tom Lenahan has joined the company as national sales director. He has worked for more than 25 years in smart home automation as both an executive and entrepreneur. Lenahan previously held executive sales positions at home automation heavyweights X-10 and Remotec Technology.

National Association of Electrical Distributors (NAED) (St. Louis): NAED inked an agreement with SPARXiQ and Mark McGready that will allow the company and the association to split McGready’s time and work with both, according to a post on NAED’s LinkedIn page.

McGready will remain director of strategic analytics for SPARXiQ, but also work with NAED distributor members as an independent data insights advisor. In his role with NAED, McGready will help distributors maintain and analyze data. McGready plans to help members become more comfortable with data interpretation, which includes using data from a number of NAED products, including the Market Data Program, the NAED Economic and Industry Sector Outlook, and PAR. He will work with both NAED and SPARXiQ through Feb. 2022.


The industry lost one of the best-known leaders in the St. Louis electrical industry with the passing on March 28 of Bob Finley, former president and CEO of Glasco Electric Co.

According to his obituary posted on, Finley was the husband of the late Hilda Ann Finley (nee Leithauser); father of Richard (Jennifer), Robert (Teresa), Carole and the late Nancy Finley; grandfather of Eric, Jacob, Robert, Hannah, Lucas and Kelsey; and great-grandfather of Finley.

Along with his long tenure at Glasco, according to an e-mail from the Electrical Board of Missouri and Illinois, Finley was a distinguished alumni of Ranken Technical College and a graduate of Washington University.

Electrical Wholesaling’s staff got to know Bob through the many articles he wrote for the magazine over the years on sales and management tips for distributors. His personality and love for the industry jumped off the pages of the hand-written manuscripts he sent us for publication, and we cherish the many stories he would tell us about life as a salesperson in St. Louis’ tight-knit electrical community.

Bob’s writing was enhanced by his skills as savvy observer of human nature and his love for telling stories. Our favorite tale was his description of a conversation he had with a contractor who was running a bit late on payment. When he asked the contractor why he was running late on payment, the contractor apparently told him, “At the end of the month, I put the invoices in a cardboard box and bring it over the back staircase. Then I empty the invoices on the stairs, and walk over them. After I do that, I pick up the ones with a boot print on them and pay those.”