Vonore, TN – Terry Bell, the MasterCraft Chief Operating Officer, recently passed away after a battle with a serious medical condition. Bell, who has been with the company since 1997, has left a legacy of true leadership, pushing MasterCraft to the highest standards of innovative research & development, quality boat-building and manufacturing best practices that have often been emulated throughout the marine industry.
“To say Terry was a key figure in MasterCraft’s success over the last 10 years would be an immense understatement,” says John Dorton, President and CEO. “When he arrived at our doors, we were building about 8 models and only producing around 2000 boats a year. Now we have 25 different models, we build nearly 4000 units a year and our boats are built better than ever – thanks largely to Terry's efforts. But most of us will remember Terry for his gracious demeanor, gentle spirit and bright outlook and how he cared deeply for this company, our staff, our dealers and our customers. We were blessed to know him and we will miss him.”
Bell came to MasterCraft in 1997 as Plant Manager with an extensive background in the marine industry, including 24 years with U.S. Marine Corporation. From the beginning, Bell was an outstanding manager and quickly rose through the ranks. In 2000, Bell was promoted to Director of Operations which was quickly followed by a promotion to Vice President of Operations in July 2001. Three years later in 2004, Bell was named MasterCraft’s Chief Operating Officer.
Under Bell’s guidance, MasterCraft became even more admired in the boat manufacturing business thanks to such initiatives like Six Sigma, lean manufacturing and 5S safety standards that have contributed greatly to cost reduction and overall company stability. Terry led the company with customer satisfaction programs that helped reward its dealers for servicing the customer in timely and superior manner and through his leadership in R&D, MasterCraft introduces more new models and technologies than any one else in the tow boat market, giving it an unparalleled edge in the marketplace.
A native of Marysville, Washington, Terry is survived by his wife Debra, daughter Julia, son Nathan, daughter-in-law Brandy, and the great joy of his life, grandson Jackson.