Arkansas Best's Incoming CEO, Judy McReynolds, Treads Her Own Path to the Top

by Jan Cottingham  on Monday, Nov. 2, 2009 12:00 am  

Judy McReynolds is set to become the only female CEO of an Arkansas-based publicly traded company on Jan. 1.

But she doesn't doubt that the economy will recover "because we always come out of these recessions one way or the other."

Almost exactly a week after McReynolds expressed these sentiments, the government reported that the economy grew 3.5 percent in the third quarter. Although federally funded programs pushing consumer spending on cars and homes bolstered the growth in Gross Domestic Product, the announcement was hailed by The Wall Street Journal as an "unofficial end to the recession."

Whether or not the worst downturn since the Great Depression has ended, McReynolds faces tough challenges at Arkansas Best. But she counts among her strengths a willingness to listen and "to work very hard for things that I think are important."

She thinks Arkansas Best and its people are important, she knows her numbers and "I think I am so fortunate to be asked to be the CEO of a company that is full of the best employees in the industry."



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