It is with great sadness that ARN reports the death of former industry operator Bradley E. Kjar, who resided in Newnan, Georgia, and passed away at age 51 on June 18.
Kjar was born in 1971, in Ida Grove, Iowa, and grew up in Waverly, Iowa. He attended the University of Iowa, graduating in 1993 with a bachelor’s degree in communications. He later received a master’s in business administration in 2005.
Kjar is described as a creative and innovative team builder in the corporate car rental industry. In fact, he entered the industry almost by accident. Some 27 years ago, he had rented a vehicle from Enterprise, and upon returning the car, inquired if the branch was hiring. It worked, as just weeks later, he was hired and learning the industry. He went on to serve as director of local market operations for Dollar Thrifty and helped increase its off-airport market with corporate locations operated by independent operators. In 2009, Kjar moved to Avis Budget, serving the metro Atlanta market. He later became director of operations for U-Save Car & Truck Rental.
“Brad made me a lot stronger in business and as a person,” said Torry Zerilla, who served as territory manager with Kjar at Avis Budget Group. “Brad was one of the most caring people I've ever known. To us, he never seemed to have a bad day, and his positivity lifted all of us.”
In 2015, Kjar joined the American Car Rental Association (ACRA) board of directors, a position he served in through 2020.
“Brad was a standing board of director with the American Car Rental Association,” said Sharon Faulkner, ACRA executive director. “He served on ACRA's legal and legislative committee and was an active member. His sudden death shocked and saddened us. We will remember his professionalism and heartwarming smile that was always filled with kindness.”
Most recently, Kjar was serving as general manager with Sedgwick Corporate Services in Atlanta. According to his obituary, he volunteered his time serving in youth ministry and missions to Haiti, and was ordained as a pastor, even officiating three weddings. It also notes his optimism, storytelling, sense of humor, and love of Metallica, the Kansas City Chiefs, and Iowa Hawkeyes.
He leaves behind two children, Hope and Gabriel, among other family and friends.