Scott Griffith, CEO of Zipcar Inc. in Cambridge, Mass.
Hometown: Murrysville, Penn.
Family: A daughter, 18, and son, 12. His wife, Lore Griffith, works for Information Technology Services Marketing Association.
What he runs on: Coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts. He makes it at home or stops by on the way to work.
What he does for fun: Skiing, biking. This month he rode in the Pan-Massachusetts Challenge, a bike ride that raises money for Boston’s Dana-Farber Cancer Institute. Griffith was treated for lymphoma about 14 years ago at Massachusetts General Hospital. He now chairs its Cancer Center’s leadership council.
Education: Engineering degree from Carnegie Mellon, MBA from University of Chicago. “I can still talk to the engineers here at Zipcar,” he says. “It makes it hard for them to pull a fast one.”
Work history: Includes Information America, a public-information provider that was bought by a competitor; the Parthenon Group consulting firm; the Boeing Co.
Starting at Zipcar: The company was founded by an urban planner and a health care consultant in 2000, but within a few years was struggling to raise capital. Some investors tapped Griffith for the CEO job and he started in early 2003. “When I was first raising money for Zipcar, I’m pretty sure people were snickering when I walked out of the room,” he says. “I’d say, ‘We’re going to change the way of cars,’ and they wouldn’t really say anything.”
Fellow board members: Zipcar’s board includes Steve Case, the co-founder of AOL, and Meg Whitman, former CEO of eBay. Case’s investment firm, Revolution LLC, owns nearly 18 percent of Zipcar, according to regulatory filings.
His Zipcar of choice: He opts for the Mini Cooper convertible in warm weather, and sometimes the pickup truck.
Travel tips: He spends at least a third of his time on the road, including international trips. His advice? “Keep it simple. I never wear suits anymore and I used to think I needed a suit all the time. Instead of carrying a briefcase I carry a biker’s bag because they’re flexible and you can jam a lot of stuff in there. And obviously, don’t check a bag.”