Great Dane Trailers announced today that Jim Pines, executive vice-president of sales and operations will step down from his role at the end of 2011 in order to devote his full attention to personal and family business concerns. Pines’ announcement comes in the wake of the tragic accident that took the life of his father, the founder of Pines Trailers and long-time COO of Great Dane, Phill Pines.

“I was saddened by Jim’s decision to leave Great Dane,” said Bill Crown, president and CEO of Great Dane Trailers. “Our families have been partners for twenty-five years, and as I told Jim, Great Dane will not be the same company in his absence. That said, all of us at Great Dane respect and support the tough decisions Jim needs to make at this difficult time.”

Pines’ responsibilities will be taken on by other members of the Great Dane executive team. Dean Engelage, executive vice-president of strategic planning, will assume responsibility for the sales organization, and Rick Mullininx, executive vice-president of engineering, will oversee the warranty and quality departments.

In addition, Sam Gupta has been promoted to executive vice-president of manufacturing and will report directly to Bill Crown.

“This company has been a huge part of my life for twenty-five years, and it will be difficult to step down,” Pines said, “but I now have other priorities that require my full attention. I will always feel deeply connected to the employees, the customers, and the business of Great Dane Trailers. I have enjoyed being a part of building this organization and I am confident that I leave it in good hands.”