2011 Hall of Fame : David Pitts - With Intellect and Intensity
One of the happier challenges Pitts needed to manage was the burgeoning growth of his company on an annual basis. Classic's annual growth rate between 1983 and 2000 was a staggering 37 percent, which meant that every two to three years the printer would outgrow its operating systems. That led the company to develop processes that led to ISO compliance; Classic has been ISO registered for the past 14 years.
But what really gave the company balance from a directional standpoint was the complementary relationship between Pitts and Gardner. The two will often disagree, but have the ability to close the door and hash out their differences until they can arrive at a consensus.
"Bill is very much a people person; me, not so much," Pitts observes of Gardner. "I'm a numbers guy, a rules guy and a technical guy. Bill really knows how to motivate people, and is a huge part of the reason why Classic Graphics is so successful."
For many colleagues, Pitts has been a wealthy source of knowledge in all things print-related, and some have picked his brain on matters aside from printing. To his credit, Pitts has always been happy to extend his expertise to fellow printers and clients.
Sharing His Wisdom
"David is one of the smartest guys I've ever met in this industry...and in life, for that matter," notes Andy Shulman, president of Atlanta-based Standard Press. "The knowledge that David has on many fronts is amazing. What truly makes him special is his willingness to share that amazing knowledge and to help other companies in our industry. I can tell you first-hand that I've benefitted tremendously."
Mervil Paylor, principal of Mervil Paylor Design, loves the fact that Pitts is a straight-shooter, a no-nonsense individual. "David is the same person professionally that he is personally—the WYSIWYG factor," she says. "You know where you stand with David. I can call him on a non-printing issue, like if I'm buying some computer equipment, and get his opinion. I know that if I call on him, I can count on him."