WEST LIBERTY, W.Va., Nov. 11, 2019 — Pittsburgh CEO Charles Bitzer will be the guest speaker for this fall’s Executive Seminar, to be held at noon, Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2019 in College Hall. Free and open to the public, the seminar offers College of Business student a chance to listen and learn from highly successful business leaders.
Bitzer is president and CEO of ABARTA, Inc. and chairman and CEO of ABARTA Coca-Cola Beverages.
A third generation shareholder, he began his career in 1985 with Buffalo Coca-Cola Bottling Company. During his tenure there, he served progressively in the Sales and Marketing Department, reaching the position of general sales manager in 1992.
In 1996, he became vice president and general manager of Coca-Cola Bottling Company of the Lehigh Valley, with overall responsibility for both Lehigh and Coatesville Coca-Cola.
In 2002, he became president of ABARTA Coca-Cola with responsibility for all four Coca-Cola franchise territories (Cleveland, Buffalo N.Y., Lehigh Valley, Pa. and Coatesville, Pa.).
In 2009, he was promoted to chief operating officer of ABARTA, Inc., with responsibility for all of its companies: Press Media Group (sold 2013), Kahiki Foods (sold 2018), ABARTA Energy, and ABARTA Coca-Cola. In August 2016, he was named chairman and CEO of ABARTA Coca-Cola Beverages (ACCB), prior to a transaction with the Coca-Cola Company that tripled the size of the business.
In addition to the ABARTA board, Bitzer serves on two private boards: American Textile Company and Peacock Alley; two non-profit boards: Sen. John Heinz History Center and Fountainhead Foundation; and one industry board: Coca-Cola Bottlers Association where he is on the Board of Governors and serves as its vice president.
A 1985 graduate of the University of Southern California with a bachelor’s degree in history, he earned his MBA from the University of Rochester in 1991.
He and his wife, Shelley, live in Pittsburgh and have four adult children.
Associate Professor of Management Dave Wright coordinates the annual Executive Seminar Series, which has been ongoing at WLU since 1986.
The College of Business offers students undergraduate degrees in Accounting, Computer Information Systems, Cybersecurity, Entrepreneurship, Finance, General Business, Health Care Management, Management, Marketing, Sport Management and Zoo Management.
Most recently it added an online MBA to its degree offerings. For complete information, please call 304-336-8053 or visit westliberty.edu/westbusiness.