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   Vol. 22 No. 32
Tuesday September 19, 2023
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Joe Garren, Mario Ureta, Kevin Rohrer and Marco Rohrer
All Fall Out For Fun . . . EMO Trans kicks off its Annual Global Meeting September 19 at beautiful Amelia Island Omni Resort as Chairwoman Karin Frigger joins a rousing team building exercise by the ocean that serves as warmup as this conference hits the ground running. A family affair, Karin is in Florida with the global team including her two children Sven and Jenni both involved in day-to-day Emo Trans.
(Bottom photo) Am I Blue? Left to right—Joe Garren, Sales & Account Manager, EMO Atlanta; Mario Ureta, Sales Manager, EMO Los Angeles; Kevin Rohrer and Emo Trans President & CEO Marco Rohrer, and the EMO team pictured here created sand art branding the beach: EMO Trans “Success By Performance.”

     In Amelia Island we caught up with Karin Frigger, who today serves as leader of the company and Chairwoman, a title she eased into when Joachim Frigger left us suddenly April 19, 2021.
     Karin had been right next to Jo when EMO Trans opened their U.S. office in 1971 and although she had stepped down from day-to-day activities at EMO, she was never too far away from the action as often happens when a family business grows exponentially.
     So in 2021 Karin came back to the future of leading the company, picking up where Jo left off. We asked Karin to write what she would want to say at the opening of EMO Trans's event and what we received is a passionate declaration of intentions. This reads like an epoch adventure, at times very exciting and although, maybe tinged with a bit of melancholy.
     However Karin faces the future on the bright side recalling what it felt like moving into the leadership role at this most successful and admired company.
     EMO Trans is a powerful, dedicated well positioned company and the lady plans to keep things moving in an upward manner.
     Here she shares some up close and personal insight in her new role as one of the unique top women in the world of cargo.


Karin Frigger

This is not the first time that I take the floor and speak but it is the first time that I feel the need to do it consciously without the support and guidance of my husband, Jo Frigger.
      October will start in a few weeks. My husband considered October a month of new beginnings; he enjoyed the transformation of green leaves into bright vivid colors and the growing season of some favorite vegetables and fruits. Not only did we celebrate his birthday in October, but we also commemorated that EMO Trans USA came to life as we moved our first shipment 49 years ago in October. October was always a special time of the year for Jo Frigger so it’s bittersweet for me to take on this challenge at this point in time.
      As Chairwoman of EMO Trans USA, I will continue, along with our executive team, Jo’s model blueprint to ensure the company remains prosperous and thrives in order to achieve ongoing development and further growth and stability.

A Family Celebration

      On what would have been Jo’s 81st birthday in 2021, we celebrated his life by gathering with loved ones, friends, and colleagues, as one family to exchange treasured memories and unforgettable stories. Our celebration was naturally in Freeport, NY. This is the town where our real American life started, where we bought our first home, and where our children Sven and Jennifer were both born. The restaurant Otto’s Sea Grill is where we celebrated the opening of EMO Trans back in 1972 along with so many more extraordinary occasions. Freeport is where our corporate office was established and called home for many decades. Jo was a local man: despite his countless journeys around the world, Freeport was one of those locations where he felt at home. So, in continuing with tradition, I know he is pleased that we shared a toast in his honor where it all began.
      So many of our guests that evening were part of building our successful foundation and stable company; it was a time full of promise for all of us. Jo discovered that his calling was in logistics, and he gave EMO Trans his soul from the very beginning. The company opened the door to his entrepreneurial spirit and flourished under his savvy business style. He built strong relationships with worldwide partners and global customers; EMO Trans filled his heart with passion every day.
      Jo would reflect on EMO’s business throughout the year but more so in October. It was the time he evaluated our accomplishments, contemplated the necessities that needed to be completed by December, and always structured goals for the upcoming year.
      As Jo once wrote, “I wanted to take this opportunity to say a heartfelt thank you and to tell everyone how much I appreciate all of your hard work and dedication that all of you provide to the EMO Trans family. I feel that our accomplishments over the years have been well built on a solid foundation and driven by our deep-rooted culture of Success by Performance. I take great pride in our success, as I hope you do as well, and I am determined that EMO Trans continues on this path.” We are positive that he would agree that these words are just as – if not more – fitting today as they were back when he wrote them.
      Jo loved life, and lived his to the fullest, and that was due in great part because of all of our people's dedication. Jo’s vision was one of empowerment, to honor people’s autonomy while offering the support to encourage them to be the best they can be. Think of the trust that he had in each of EMO's employees as a member of his beloved EMO Family.
      Let me share some thought on the recent past, both in terms of the challenges we were faced with and the satisfaction of measuring the solidity of our company. The years of Covid, as for many people, was somewhat the saddest for us. But we also found it to be satisfying through different channels.
      Although Jo anxiously awaited normality, he continued his daily business routine via phone calls, emails, and most often Zoom meetings. He was proud that EMO Trans has the best employees in the industry, and he was able to show his commitment and express his thankfulness to our staff through consistent communication. He confidently assured our worldwide organization that EMO Trans was strong and would prevail during these uncertain times, and we have. Our values and approach have carried us forward.
      On a personal level, it was troubling for Jo to not have the ability to visit with friends. His greatest disappointment was not spending face-to-face time with our beloved grandchildren, so instead he intensified his personal relationship with each of them through virtual calls. He was able to easily step into Maya’s, Lucas’s, Kai’s, and Jaxon’s sneakers from afar and be more involved in their daily lives.
      EMO Trans, Inc. was Jo’s cherished “first child,” which was as true on his last day on Earth as it was when we began this journey together in the USA nearly a half century ago. Jo was the embodiment of altruism combined with a strong work ethic; he always looked for peaceful solutions in the face of adversity and supported creative problem solving – thinking outside of the box. He created an environment in which people could reach their full potential and strived to ensure that the EMO Family was always a center of support.
      Jo truly loved what he did, not only on the business end of things, but also because of the cherished relationships that filled his life with so much joy and happiness. Even throughout his last year, a year brimming with uncertainty and great doubt, Jo was always optimistic that teamwork and perseverance would carry us through – and he was 100% correct. His confidence and encouragement were contagious and helped to maintain a successful, stable, and thriving organization, which is now poised to only move forward in leaps and bounds.

EMO Trans people

Looking Towards The EMO Future

      As Jo used to say, “We are in the business of building relationships.” First and foremost, strong relationships are the bedrock upon which success is built. Success by Performance is not just an empty slogan. EMO Trans will continue to build and strengthen existing relationships, both internally and externally, while opening doors for new ones to be formed. So, as the new Chairwoman of EMO Trans, Inc. it is my goal to maintain the culture of the organization, the culture that Jo took so much pride in creating with the assistance of the excellent team in place. We have always been a company that has maintained an open-door policy from top to bottom (and vice versa).
      We will maintain the independence and freedom to grow as we deem appropriate, and that is only achievable through having a secure financial foundation based on self-reliance, where the decision-making process rests solely in our own control and not in the hands of others. We have no outstanding debts, and our investments and programs are fully self-funded – a philosophy that Jo was very proud of and one that will continue so that we will always be the rulers of our own destiny.
      This is evident in every facet of our company, from making investments in IT research and development to reinstating pay and reimbursing the necessary pay cuts we made during the difficult days of the pandemic. The goal was to maintain employment for all, which was a success, and then to also repay those lost wages as soon as it was feasible. This may not have been a popular decision at other companies – especially in other boardrooms – but the well-being of the staff takes precedence, and it was simply the right thing to do. The point being, it is not always just the bottom line that should be the driving force behind decision making – the driving force should be, “what do I do for my family in order to help make it stronger and more resilient in the long term – not just considering short-term personal gains?”
      I would be remiss if I did not thank, congratulate, and include the importance of the support of all of our partners around the world, both foreign and domestic. Again, Jo really did consider all a part of the EMO Family, and my promise to continue this philosophy of “family” is truly the cornerstone of the foundation upon which we will continue to build our future.

In Conclusion Is A New Beginning

      There is an Oak Tree that my husband planted on our farm in upstate New York, one that has been growing from a seedling (brought over from his hometown in Germany) to a giant tree (now some 40 years later), and he would always compare the roots of that tree to EMO Trans and also to his family. One needs strong roots in order to have a healthy, strong, and thriving tree – one that can withstand the harsh weather, strong winds, the freezing temperatures of winter, and even a direct lighting strike. That tree is as strong as ever and growing beautifully. The roots of EMO Trans are solid: we have withstood many challenges and obstacles, and we have always come out stronger afterwards. And we will continue to do so as long as we all stick together and work as a team – as a true family.
      The entire EMO family continues to grow while remaining tight-knit and focused on the important things in life, not only “business” and financial success. A big part of that Success is harmony and cooperation among the members of the “family.” Jo always saw the integral role of each individual and their importance in adding support and value to the organization as a whole.       Jo loved family and he truly considered everyone part of this “thing” that was bigger than himself.
      Although the loss of Jo – the patriarch of the EMO Family, and my personal life as well – has left a deep and empty void within myself that will never be filled, it is with unwavering determination that I will ensure his legacy will live on through the company he built and within all of those who continue to make his dream a reality – continuing the spirit of the EMO Family.
       Jo is in our thoughts each and every day. As a family, we miss him very much. He was, and always will be, husband, dad, and grandpa above everything else. My dear Ama, I will forever miss you. But I feel I need to carry your flame forward and show you that your creature will survive and succeed.
      And to the members of the EMO Trans Family – I give you my word that we will continue in Jo’s legacy and thrive, always moving forward while never forgetting where we came from.
KarinFrigger,  Jo Frigger, Sven Frigger, Jenni Frigger, Marco Rohrer       In closing, I would like to share Jo’s philosophy on life, and I hope it echoes in yours… “Live your life to the fullest; life is what you make it.” I know he enjoyed his wonderful life and was so very grateful that EMO Trans was in the center of it all. EMO Trans has always been an organization that values knowledge, creativity, and problem-solving skill sets. I, along with Marco Rohrer, the person my husband chose to work as our CEO and in whom I have the greatest confidence, and with the Board of Directors, will continue to foster this environment in order to ensure that EMO Trans maintains its strong position now and moving far into the future.

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