I hated the stage.
Back in the spring of 2007, in the middle of Vienna, my predecessor and former Automotive News Publisher Peter Brown asked me if I'd welcome delegates to our annual Congress in Europe. It would be my first appearance as the new publisher of Automotive News Europe. And I was petrified.
Peter gave me just enough advance notice to allow me to fret for two days before the event. I ultimately spent the final few hours before the Congress locked away from the cocktail reception so that I could practice — and pace — in my hotel room up above the crowds, practicing and pacing and practicing and pacing.
As a boy growing up in Canada, but admiring American media, this was all I wanted: the perfection of the moment, emulating the interviewing styles of NBC's Bob Costas or Hockey Night in Canada's Ron MacLean. It had to be precise; it had to be good.
Vienna went OK (perhaps it was terrible), but it was the first step on a path that led to countless appearances in front of our loyal audience over the years, as they unknowingly allowed me to develop, learn and create my own stage style. Ultimately, the stage was synonymous with growth.
This week that passion leads me away from Automotive News to a new stage — one that combines my automotive business interests with the broadcasting energy of that young boy. I will be host of my own SiriusXM show, on a platform of some 34 million subscribers, and also take on a new business role being announced Monday, Sept. 13: president of Motormindz, a global venture consultancy.
If all the world's a stage, I've been honored to walk across it, embrace it and love it — all in the name of serving Automotive News.