Title: Former Chairman and CEO of Lanier Worldwide, Inc. and Author of High-Performance Ethics & From the Shop Floor to the Top Floor
Wes Cantrell, the retired Chairman and CEO of Lanier Worldwide, Inc., began his career in 1955 as a copier repairman. Wes is known as a world-class leader and a forward-thinking expert in marketing and sales, a driving force behind Lanier’s story of high performance.
Before retiring in 2001, Wes led a merger with Ricoh, a $14 billion copier manufacturer. He also successfully acquired and integrated several companies into Lanier Worldwide, Inc. During his tenure as President and CEO, Lanier saw consistent growth in revenues, from $93 million in 1977 to $1.4 billion in 2000, and the organization achieved sustained profitability in every fiscal year. Lanier Worldwide also attained excellent ratings in customer satisfaction, eventually winning the JD Power Award for its industry.
Through nearly five decades at Lanier, Wes built a history of personal performance and a reputation for integrity. He served in a number of positions, starting just out of college in Sales and Service and ultimately leading the company, first as President and later as Chairman and CEO. His experience has made him a noted authority on sales management, marketing, acquisitions and divestitures, sourcing and product development strategies, and leadership of multinational organizations.
Wes attended Southern Technical Institute, where he graduated with highest honors. In 2002, he received an honorary doctorate from Southern Polytechnic State University. He was named a member of the Horatio Alger Association of Distinguished Americans in 2001.
Wes is currently a member of the Board of Directors for Piedmont Office Realty Trust, and Southern Polytechnic State University Foundation. Wes has also left important legacies through his previous work on the Board of Directors for the First Union National Bank of Atlanta, Edwards Baking of Atlanta, Oxford Manufacturing of Atlanta, AESData of Canada and Ann Taylor Shoes of New York.
At home in Atlanta with his wife Bernadine Bigner Cantrell, Wes enjoys writing, teaching, golf, volunteer service, hunting, fishing, and projects around the home. He attends the First Baptist Church of Woodstock and is a member of the Atlanta Rotary Club. Wes also thoroughly enjoys spending time with his four children and twenty-two grandchildren.