Dave Zerfoss joined Husqvarna as President of its Professional Products Division in 1991. During his 18-year tenure, sales grew by 1700%. He created a strategic plan to move the company from an import/distributor system to a dealer direct and national accounts sales organization. He successfully negotiated agreements with distributors, led a plan to add thousands of new dealers, and created a dealer direct distribution system to over 10,000 independent retail and rental equipment dealers.
He negotiated new business contracts with national retail chains Lowe's, Sears and Tractor Supply while maintaining dealer mindshare and continuing to grow the independent dealer business.
He is an experienced business integrator who helped incorporate other North American divisions’ customers, brands and employees into one unified company and culture.
Prior to Husqvarna, Zerfoss was General Sales Manager for German-based STIHL, a manufacturer of chain saws and other handheld power equipment for professionals, farmers and homeowners. He began his career with Exxon as a Regional Sales Representative, progressing though Strategic Business Analysis, Real Estate Acquisition and Business Owner/Employee Training. He also worked as VP of Sales and Marketing for Leisure Time Distributors, a marine and recreational products company.
While working in the outdoor power equipment industry, Zerfoss served as Board Member for 15 years and served two times as Chairman of the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute (OPEI), working on critical industry and company issues such as EPA regulations, California Air Resources Board (CARB), plus ANSI and other federal, state and municipal regulations. Concurrently, he also served as Chairman, Portable Power Equipment Manufacturers’ Association (PPEMA) and as a Board Member for 12 years. He helped lead the merging of OPEI, Planet and PGMS (industry and professional landscape associations) trade shows. He was also instrumental in negotiating the successful merger of two industry associations, PPEMA into OPEI.
After retiring from Husqvarna in 2009, Zerfoss formed "The Zerfoss Group" which offers leadership expertise to large and medium sized businesses alike, in a number of strategic areas.
In addition, Zerfoss is a Chair of Vistage International, the world’s leading chief executive organization and an Executive in Residence at Queens University, McColl School of Business. A transformational leader, Zerfoss also enjoys utilizing his public speaking talents to deliver keynote speeches that touch, move and inspire others to grow and prosper.
Zerfoss is author of the thought provoking, inspirational book, "Stress is a Choice".