Chairman & CEO
Jerry Frazee has over thirty years of extensive and diversified domestic and international business experience. He has logged over 2.5 Million miles of international travel to date, much of which has been for establishing offices and manufacturing plants throughout Asia in Hong Kong, Taiwan, People's Republic of China, Philippines, Thailand, Singapore and Korea. Additionally, he has established multiple manufacturing capabilities throughout the U.S.
Mr. Frazee brings a wealth of perspective to domestic and international business with Standard Operating Procedures (SOP), overall Quality Assurance (QA) and Engineering Research and Development (R&D). Over his career, he has managed and directed over 23 product design and launches valued at up to $185 million from concept through distribution. He has also managed and directed the Greenfield construction of multiple manufacturing factories both in the US and internationally, and pioneered strategic initiatives to facilitate double-digit operating cost reductions for over 16 products.
Mr. Frazee also understands, first hand, the challenges of high growth companies. He is an experienced entrepreneur who has successfully been a senior founding executive participant in six successful start-up companies resulting in one technology sale and two IPOs: Dataspeed, Inc. and Interactive Network, Inc., both Silicon Valley based companies. He had a pivotal role in positioning the two pre-IPO companies for annual revenue growth exceeding 45% , and negotiated, structured and secured investments at 10 times initial market valuation. Mr. Frazee also successfully founded International Manufacturing Specialists, Inc. (IMS) and International Sourcing Specialists, Inc. (ISS) building them to over $40mm in sales prior to a technology sale. In his executive positions, he has successfully expanded operations and markets internationally for several companies across his career, most notably, leading the team to move AT&T's telephone manufacturing business to the Far East. Over the course of his career he has also worked as both a Program Manager in the Electronics Division and a Cost Engineer/Operations Manager for Mattel, Inc. Prior to that, he worked for McDonnell Douglas Corporation as an Industrial Engineer. The combination of start-up experience coupled with work for major US Corporations gives Mr. Frazee added perspective to help drive new companies forward in the ever growing global marketplace.
Mr. Frazee served in combat for the US ARMY after earning his Science Degree in Industrial Technology from Long Beach College. His education also includes an Executive Bachelor/MBA from Pepperdine University with Continued MBA senior status course work at Pepperdine University.
Founder & President
Chris Allen is a native of Madison, Indiana, the third generation in his family to be involved with aviation. His grandfather (James R. Allen) and father (R. Bruce Allen) were both private pilots from Louisville, Kentucky. Allen graduated from Brevard Community College in Melbourne, Florida with an Associate’s Degree in Broadcasting and Media in 1993, and he worked for Channel 15 in Louisville, Kentucky and at King’s Daughters Hospital in Madison, Indiana.
Much like his father, Allen was intrigued by aviation; he left Madison to work for ATA Airlines in 1999. “I intentionally started at the very bottom of the company, wanting to learn how it operated from the ground up,” says Allen. That position gave Allen a unique perspective others did not have – specifically, about what not to do with an airline. Allen developed relationships with pilots, ground personnel, and flight crews to learn more about how an airline worked.
Then 9/11 occurred, disrupting Allen’s ambitions of working up through ATA’s ranks as the aviation industry suffered a devastating series of setbacks. “For three years, I didn’t know if I would have a job,” he recalls, noting the difficulties ATA experienced. Amidst the sorrow of 9/11, Allen met his future wife, Sandy, who worked at Ambassadair Travel Club and had the only TV in the building on the fateful day of the attacks.
“When Sandy’s position was cut from Ambassadair in 2004, I was determined to learn all I could as to why those layoffs happened,” continues Allen. “How could a company reach the point of cutting good people from their ranks? I truly believe that from the ashes of ATA’s demise came Heartland Travel Club.”
From that point on, Allen spent the next three years determined to launch Heartland Travel Club. He explains, “I knew I needed a business plan and a mentor, so I started with cold calls to suppliers, aviation experts, and leasing agents to gather numbers.” That three-year span gave Allen a wealth of knowledge and expertise in aviation which, combined with his 20 years of media experience, will provide Heartland Travel Club with a solid advantage.