Brian Thomas, Chief Executive Officer
Thomas attended Western Michigan University, where he received an undergraduate degree in marketing and manufacturing engineering technology. He began his professional career at Forkardt, Inc. in Portage, Mich., and later became an account executive manager for Honda Manufacturing at global automotive giant Magna International. Thomas left Michigan in 1999 to pursue a teaching certification from Colorado State University in secondary education and biology. He taught high school classes in Loveland, Colo., before joining OtterBox in 2003.
At that time, OtterBox was a $2 million niche business manufacturing waterproof boxes and cases for PDAs. The product line also included Cigar Caddy — travel humidors for cigar aficionados. As the company grew, so did Thomas’ role in directing company strategy. He was promoted to director of sales and marketing, then chief operating officer, president, and finally into his current role as CEO.
As CEO, Thomas is responsible for leading global expansion efforts and is the chief visionary in positioning OtterBox as an innovation technology company primed to extend product offerings outside the premium protective case industry. During his tenure, OtterBox has been on the Inc. 5000 “Fastest Growing Companies" list six consecutive years, named on the “Great Places to Work in America” list twice by Forbes and Entrepreneur magazine, and one of “America’s Most Promising Companies” by Fortune. Thomas himself was named one of the "Top 100 CEOs of the Mid-market Elite” by Chief Executive Magazine. OtterBox has now grown to a $1 billion company with more than 1,000 employees worldwide.