CHANDLER, AZ (BRAIN)—David Leppert, the interim president of Mobeus Bicycling Co-op and one of its original founders, has resigned citing personal reasons.
Leppert said his resignation was effective Feb.1.
According to Jeff Milbauer, who sits on Mobeus’ board of directors, Leppert stepped down because “there were some expectations of the board that he needed to fulfill,” but was unable to because of personal reasons.
Milbauer declined to elaborate further saying only that there were some things that needed to get done that Leppert wasn’t able to do.
Leppert co-founded Mobeus, formerly known as YaYa Bike, in May 2001 with Bob Friedman, who left the co-op in 2004 to embark on a five-year around-the-world sailing trip.
Friedman was the co-op’s original president and he brought on Mike Basch to work as chief executive officer. Sara Kittelson, an employee of the co-op since the beginning, moved up to president about two years ago after Basch left the company.
Leppert was tapped as interim president last November following Kittelson’s departure from the company and the industry to work in marketing.
The plan was for Leppert to stay on as president until March to buy the board time to find Kittelson’s replacement, Milbauer said.
Before Leppert took on the interim role, he was on the board of directors, but hadn’t been active in Mobeus for three or four years, Milbauer said.
The board began searching for a permanent president after Kittelson’s resignation and has interviewed several candidates. The board’s priority is to find the right person for the job, “and not just put somebody in the position,” Milbauer said.
With Leppert’s resignation, the board isn’t sure whether it will stick with the March timeframe to have a replacement hired or take more time, he said.
The Mobeus cooperative began with 10 members and has grown to more than 260 specialty bicycle retailers in 360 locations over the last seven years. Growth this year has been flat, according to Milbauer, because the board has been focusing on filling the president position.