Smith & Associates Announces Changes to Executive Leadership

HOUSTON, TEXAS - (December 8, 2008) -  Smith & Associates today announced several changes to its executive leadership team. Doug Kelly has resigned from his position as President and Chief Operating Officer. Kelly, who joined the company in 1995 as Chief Financial Officer, will continue as a Director for Smith through the end of 2009.

With Kelly’s departure, Matthew Hartzell has been named Chief Operating Officer. Hartzell joined Smith & Associates as General Counsel in 1998. In addition to his responsibilities for legal and regulatory matters, in recent years he has also overseen the human resources, facilities, security, and information technology departments. Lee Ackerley, Co-founder and Director of Smith, commented that “Hartzell’s leadership and involvement with all aspects of our global operations, makes him an ideal choice for the role of COO.” Prior to Smith, Hartzell was a shareholder with Hirsch and Westheimer, P.C. (1985-98). Hartzell received his Bachelor of Arts from St. John's College and his Juris Doctor from University of Houston College of Law.

Hartzell will share responsibility for management of Smith’s global operations with Marc Barnhill.  Barnhill, Chief Trading Officer since July, 2007, directs the company’s sales, purchasing, product management, marketing and business development activities worldwide.  He has held various executive and management positions since joining the company as a Buyer in 1990.

Thuy Tran has been named General Counsel. Tran served as Associate General Counsel for Smith since 2000. Tran’s expertise with contracts, international transactions, employment matters and general business law along with her extensive knowledge of Smith’s customers, vendors and practices will allow seamless transition to her new role, according to Hartzell.  Tran received her Bachelor of Arts from University of Houston and her Juris Doctor from South Texas College of Law. Prior to Smith, Tran was an associate at McLeod, Alexander, Powel & Apffel, P.C. in Galveston, Texas.

Kirk Wehby recently joined Smith as Vice President of Global Operations. Before joining Smith, Wehby held various positions at Cardone Industries, recently serving as Director of Operations and Supply Chain Management. Wehby brings extensive experience to Smith’s Operations departments worldwide, having managed startup and integration of operations in both Belgium and Mexico. Wehby received his Bachelor of Science from Oral Roberts University and his Master of Business Administration from Westchester University.

Bob Ackerley, Co-Founder and Director of Smith & Associates, said:  “I am pleased to have such a dynamic executive team in place.  Smith has a strong and deep team of talented managers across our global office network to lead our business in challenging times and in periods of rapid expansion.  As we near our 25 year mark in this dynamic marketplace we remain committed to providing our customers with the highest level of service and most flexible programs in our industry.  Lee and I have great confidence in Marc, Matt and our senior team and look forward to working with them as we move ahead and pursue opportunities for growth.”

About Smith & Associates - Founded in Houston in 1984, Smith & Associates ( is a leader in the independent distribution of semiconductors and electronic components to electronics and high-tech manufacturers. Smith offers shortage sourcing for commodity and obsolete parts, innovative purchasing and inventory management solutions, redistribution of excess inventory, and component stocking for warranty and repair programs.

A privately held company, Smith & Associates employs more than 320 people worldwide, with annual revenue in excess of US$300 million. Smith’s regional hubs in Houston, Hong Kong and Amsterdam are ISO certified and IDEA compliant. In addition, sales and purchasing offices are located in Silicon Valley, Barcelona, Guadalajara, New York, Shanghai, Shenzhen, Dublin, and Seoul. For more information or to reach a Smith representative 24 hours a day, please call: 1.800.HOUSTON or +1 713.430.3000

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For more information, contact:
Mark Bollinger
Smith & Associates
V.P. of Marketing      (713) 430-3000
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