ARCADIA, Calif. -- James Ryan, a former executive at BMW of North America, died Jan. 17. He was 67.
As a boy, Ryan swept floors at his grandfather's Chrysler-Plymouth dealership in Massachusetts. After college, he worked for Ford Motor Co., where he held parts, service and sales positions. In 1972, Ryan became director of parts, service and leasing at Mullane Ford in Bergenfield, N.J.; and in 1974, he moved to Volvo of America's Heavy Truck Division, where he helped launch Volvo diesel trucks.
In 1975, Ryan was recruited by BMW of North America when the factory took over the Hoffman Motors distributorship of BMWs. He began as national technical-service manager and eventually became senior vice president and general manager of Eastern operations, then of Western operations. He retired in 2002.
Ryan left BMW for five years in the 1980s. He was a partner in a Mercedes-Benz/Volvo dealership in Glendale, Calif., and then executive vice president of sales and marketing at Porsche Cars North America in Reno, Nev.
After retiring, Ryan was a consultant to a BMW dealership, then program director for BMW's CleanEnergy program in the United States.