Great Dane Announces Top Executive Succession

Dean Engelage
Dean Engelage at TMC 2022 by John Sommers II for Transport Topics

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Longtime Great Dane CEO Bill Crown announced he will step down effective Jan. 1. Dean Engelage, Great Dane’s president, will succeed Crown.

Engelage’s appointment is part of a managed executive transition, the trailer maker reported.

“It has been a privilege to serve Great Dane as CEO over the past 25 years, where both our internal team and our customers feel like family,” Crown said. “Dean and I have worked closely together, and Dean has been a terrific leader and president for Great Dane. I step aside with confidence that Great Dane is in good and capable hands,” Crown said in a release.

Engelage joined Great Dane in 2011 as executive vice president of sales and strategic planning and was appointed president in 2013.

Bill Crown


Engelage said, “I look forward to working with our dedicated team to further the company’s market leadership and equip our customers for the future, while maintaining the first-class customer experience they expect from us.” 

Rick Mullininx was named to succeed Engelage as president and chief operating officer, also effective Jan. 1.

Most recently, he served as executive vice president of engineering. He was responsible for product design, production engineering, manufacturing engineering, quality assurance and customer service, according to the company.

Rick Mullininx


Mullininx first joined Great Dane in 1980 when he took a summer engineering position as an intern in the research and development department in Savannah, Ga.

“Great Dane is an exceptional company, and I take on this new position with excitement and humility,” Mullininx said.

Founded in 1900, Great Dane manufactures dry and refrigerated trailers and truck bodies, as well as steel, aluminum and combo platform trailers. Headquartered in Chicago, it has additional corporate offices in Savannah, Ga., and 11 manufacturing plants located throughout the United States. The company’s network of corporate-owned service centers and full-line independent dealers offers distribution points for new and pre-owned trailers as well as aftermarket services across North and South America.

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