The two key female executives helped lead Toyota to new heights while promoting a culture of inclusivity and empowering women in the material handling industry.
COLUMBUS, Ind. (April 12, 2022) — Toyota Material Handling (TMH) has announced the promotions of two key female executives on the TMH management team. Lea Ann King has been promoted to Vice President of Legal and General Counsel, and Tracy Stachniak has been promoted to Vice President of Human Resources.
“Toyota and the entire material handling industry are fortunate to have exemplary female leaders like Lea Ann and Tracy,” said TMH President & CEO Bill Finerty. “They both represent the very best of the Toyota culture by living our core values every day, and I couldn’t be more proud to work alongside them. Lea Ann and Tracy continue to make invaluable contributions to our success, and their well-deserved promotions reflect the significance of their achievements.”
During her 7-year tenure at TMH, King has become a highly respected leader in the material handling industry and the legal community, leading an all-women team responsible for all legal and risk, including litigation, intellectual property, acquisitions, and corporate governance for TMH and its equity dealers. King also serves as the company’s compliance officer and corporate secretary.
One of King’s leadership projects included the development of the company’s women’s initiative – Toyota Women’s Impact Network – focused on opportunities for all associates to ensure the company promotes a culture of inclusivity and attracts diverse talent.
“I am humbled by this opportunity, and so grateful to work for a company full of male allies that actively encourage and support initiatives to attract more women to the material handling industry,” King said. “I’ll never take for granted that it is a rarity to have a job I love, with people I enjoy working with, in a company that I know values me. As a lifelong learner, I’ll never stop working to help Toyota Material Handling be the very best it can be.”
King’s leadership extends beyond the company to roles in the industry and community, including service as a board member for both the Industrial Truck Association (ITA) and Margaret Mary Health including serving on its governance and ethics committees. King also serves as an Indiana Delegate for Drexel University’s VisionForward initiative, a national coalition working to advance gender equity through women’s leadership.
Stachniak’s leadership has been integral to Toyota’s industry-leading Human Resources department, as well as the growth and success of the company’s training and development teams. During her 17-year tenure, Stachniak has become a respected company leader known for translating business objectives into initiatives that improve performance, profitability and employee engagement.
Driven by her mission to empower others, Stachniak championed Toyota’s leadership development program, which is designed to help all associates to find ways to grow, develop and lead, regardless of where they are in the organization.
Stachniak’s passion for giving back has played a significant role in TMH’s unwavering commitment to corporate social responsibility initiatives, such as the company’s partnerships with philanthropic organizations like the American Red Cross and the United Way.
TMH offers paid volunteer hours to all of its associates, and Stachniak’s team encourages every employee to use those hours and find ways to give back to the community in meaningful ways.
Under Stachniak’s leadership, Toyota’s HR team has organized a growing number of company group volunteer activities to help associates find causes important to them and to participate with their co-workers. One example of such an activity was TMH’s first-ever ‘Lift the Community Day’ last July, with Toyota associates providing 1,300 hours of service to 12 different organizations in the local Indiana community.
Stachniak leads by example as an active member of the community, serving on the Board of Directors for the Red Cross’ Southeast Chapter of Indiana as well the Japan-American Society of Indiana and the Columbus Indiana Philharmonic.
“I’ve always believed that culture and leadership are inextricably linked, and strong leadership starts with culture,” Stachniak said. “I’m so proud of the culture we’ve built and maintained at Toyota, and I’m excited to continue to contribute to that culture and impact others in a positive way.”
Like King, Stachniak is an advocate for the inclusion of women in the material handling industry and supports two leading industry initiatives, including Material Handling Institute’s (MHI) Women in Supply Chain Forum, and Material Handling Equipment Distributors Association’s (MHEDA) Women in Industry Conference.
Learn more about Toyota’s renowned people-focused culture by visiting Toyota Material Handling at ToyotaForklift.com.