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Graziadio Event in Dallas Features Toyota Execs Who Share Insights About Talent, Education and Business Opportunities

November 11, 2015  | 2 min read

On Thursday, November 5th, Pepperdine University Graziadio School of Business and Management hosted a special networking event in Dallas, TX, featuring two top Toyota executives who provided an inside look at the company’s corporate headquarters move from California to Texas. The event, hosted in partnership with the Dallas Business Club at the Westin Galleria Dallas, served as an opportunity for Pepperdine alumni and local business leaders to meet personally with Toyota executives and hear about what opportunities the company is now seeking.

The featured speakers were Zack Hicks ('97), Toyota's chief information officer and Pepperdine alumnus, and Mac Ghurani, corporate manager of HR Delivery and Operational Excellence at Toyota Financial Services.  Hicks and Ghurani discussed the career and business opportunities Toyota will bring to the greater Dallas community and their desire to do business locally. The panel members also shared how they value their vendors and view them as an extension of the company.   The room full of attendees also heard insights about the business units that are relocating, the reasons the Plano, TX,  location was selected, and the challenges the company faced in a cross-country move.

When asked about training and education, Hicks shared from his own positive experience from Pepperdine Graziadio School.  He spoke enthusiastically about adding to your knowledge by not just learning but learning the right things.  He also described the benefit of earning a degree while working.  Ghurani also weighed in on the benefits of education by linking it to resilience and the ability to figure things out.  Both speakers agreed that training and education such as an advanced degree helps build confidence. 

“We were delighted to get a first-hand account from two prominent Toyota executives about how the addition of the automobile company’s corporate headquarters will benefit workers in Texas,” said David M. Smith, dean of the Graziadio School. “Toyota has a large and important footprint, and the company’s relocation to Texas will have a significant impact on the Dallas economy.”