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John Larson - Dean's Advisory Council

John Larson

John Larson
Chief Executive Officer
Bestop, Inc.

John Larson is the Chief Executive Officer of Bestop, Inc., the market leading manufacturer of soft tops and fabric accessories for Jeep vehicles and the sole supplier of OEM soft tops for Jeep Wranglers since 1986.  

Mr. Larson has a long history of innovation in the automotive market, both from an OEM and aftermarket perspective. Most recently, he served as the President and CEO of Escort Inc., the industry leader in high-performance radar detection devices in North America.  Prior to that, Mr. Larson held a number of senior management positions at General Motors including General Manager of the Buick, Pontiac and GMC Truck Divisions. He is currently Lead Independent Director on the Board of KAR Auction Services (NYSE:KAR).

Mr. Larson earned a Bachelor's Degree in Finance from Northern Illinois University and a Master of Science degree in Management from Purdue University. He was a keynote speaker at the National Leadership Education and Development Program, and is an Honorary Lifetime Member of the Veterans of Foreign Wars National Home. He was recognized for his work with the VFW Home for Children and the Million Thanks Foundation. He and his family also volunteer at St. Vincent dePaul, where he serves as a board member.