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Jay Davenport, Jody Schara Join Company

Peterson Manufacturing Announces Director of OEM Sales, Manager of Fleet Sales

Press Release | 02.22.22 | Jeff Geoffroy

GRANDVIEW, MO (February 15, 2022) –– Peterson Manufacturing, a world-leading innovator in the design, engineering and manufacturing of a complete line of commercial vehicle/trailer safety lighting and harness systems, is pleased to announce Jay Davenport as Director, OEM Sales and Jody Schara as Manager, Fleet Sales.

“We are excited to welcome Jay and Jody to the Peterson team. Both have many years of experience building strong relationships and taking care of fleets and OEMs in the commercial vehicle market,” said Al Anderson, Vice President of Sales & Marketing. “Jay has been focused on lighting and harness systems for his entire career and Jody brings very strong technical knowledge to our customers as well. Their skills and experiences ensure that Peterson remains customer focused and top of mind to our current and future fleet and OEM customers.”

As Director, OEM Sales, Davenport will be responsible for developing and managing OEM relationships across several market segments, positioning Peterson as the standard or optional lighting and harness system choice for the OEMs within those segments.

Davenport comes to Peterson from Clarience Technologies where he was the Midwest Regional Sales Manager for their RoadReady system in 2020. This was his second stint at the company. He left Clarience, then Truck-Lite, in 2011 to join the Maxxima Division of Panor Corporation as its National OEM Manager at, where he developed their OEM base.

Davenport was originally at Truck-Lite for 16 years. He held numerous positions like National Director of OEM Trailer/Body, working with OEM and fleet accounts that were strategic to the company’s growth, and Central Area Sales Director, where he focused on fleets, manufacturers as well as the Aftermarket.

Earlier in his career, he was the National Sales Manager of Heavy Truck at K-D Lamp Company, where he helped develop products for large heavy and medium duty truck manufacturers. At R.E. Dietz Company, Davenport was a Regional Sales Manager, specializing in the automotive, truck, and agriculture industries.

In Schara’s position as Manager, Fleet Sales, he will work with fleets and dealers to spec Peterson products at OEMs to drive business. He will work closely with Davenport to ensure that the needs of our fleet customers are met.

Schara joins Peterson from ZF Group, where he was Key Account Leader for Trailer OEMs, responsible for sales and service of many major semi-trailer manufacturers. Prior to joining ZF, he held two positions at STEMCO; one as OEM Sales Manager, assigned to large OEM accounts and District Sales Manager, responsible for Aftermarket sales, pull through marketing, distributor management, customer relations, installation training, and service activity.

With 20 years of sales experience, Schara held additional sales positions in his career in the commercial vehicle and construction markets.

Davenport holds a B.S. in Business from Ferris State University in Big Rapids, Mich. While Schara earned his Executive MBA from the University of Wisconsin-Madison and his B.S. in Business Administration from University of Wisconsin-LaCrosse.

Peterson Manufacturing Company
Founded in 1945, Peterson Manufacturing Company is a world-leading innovator in the design, engineering and manufacturing of a complete line of commercial vehicle/trailer safety lighting and harness systems. With headquarters in the greater Kansas City area, Peterson is a privately held company. An ISO 9001:2015 certified company, Peterson Manufacturing is a key subsidiary of Peterson Corporation, five highly specialized companies and nearly 700 associates working in global transportation-related industries. For more information, visit