Executive Leadership Forum with Gary J. Spulak

(left to right) Andreas School of Business Dean, Tomislav Mandakovic poses with Executive Leadership Forum guest Gary J. Spulak, president of Embraer Aircraft Holding, Inc. Spulak earned an MBA in 1980 from Barry was a 2010 Distinguished Alumnus.

Barry University’s Andreas School of Business presented the spring 2011 “Executive Leadership Forum” featuring Gary J. Spulak, president of Embraer Aircraft Holding, Inc. Spulak, who graduated from Barry in 1980 with his MBA was recognized in 2010 as a Distinguished Alumnus.

The Executive Leadership Forum was created to serve as a venue for sharing practical business knowledge. Select leaders from the business community are invited to engage in a dialogue regarding their perspectives on leadership and the everyday challenges they face.

Spulak, the fourth guest to the Executive Leadership Forum, develops and manages the strategic initiatives of Embraer’s wholly owned U.S. subsidiary headquartered in Fort Lauderdale, Fl. He sat with students and faculty for a conversation on “Spotting and Nurturing Great Organizational Talent” on March 28.

Included in his interview and discussion with business school professors and students was how he began his career with Embraer in 1983 as vice president of Product Support and Information Technology. There he developed and directed the infrastructure to support the successful Bandeirante and Brasilia commercial aircraft in North America. In 1991 he was named executive vice president assuming additional responsibility for customer technical assistance, training and the administrative areas of the company including direct participation in efforts to develop and launch the ERJ 145 regional jet. Embraer has become one of the top three largest aircraft manufacturers in the world by focusing on specific market segments with high growth potential in commercial, defense, and executive aviation.

Spulak began his professional career with Federated Department Stores developing cross division IT solutions and later joined the accounting firm of Price Waterhouse as a management consultant specializing in manufacturing, industrial engineering, retailing, distribution and real estate. Born in New York City, he received a bachelor’s degree in Business Administration from the University of Miami and a master’s degree in Business Administration from Barry University.

He is actively involved in a host of civic and business organizations such as Enterprise Florida, Inc. where he serves as a board member, a member of Aerospace Industry Association’s Board of Governors and is on the board of advisors for the Brazilian-American Chamber of Commerce. Spulak was a former board of director at the International Society of Transport Aircraft Trading and former vice chairman of the board at Space Florida.

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