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40 Under 40 - Class of 2019
Business Observer Thursday, Oct. 17, 2019 11 months ago

Ryan Carter, 36

Executive vice president and co-founder, Scotlynn USA Division Inc.
by: Jay Schlichter Lee-Collier Editor

Running away from angry ostriches while his brother snatched their eggs and loading hogs onto a truck as a young boy on his grandparents farm taught Ryan Carter the real meaning of a hard day’s work.

The grind became commonplace for Carter, who took on jobs at a much younger age than his peers while growing up in Louisville, Ky., such as managing a special events company and working as a foreman for a tree company as a teenager. 

That drive later led Carter to co-found the American division of Scotlynn, a logistics and transportation company headquartered in Canada, at the age of 26 in Fort Myers.

A decade later, the 36-year-old remains at the helm of the company as executive vice president, where he has grown the operation into a powerhouse that specializes in hauling time-sensitive refrigerated produce. Today, the company has eight offices in the U.S., about 450 drivers and trucks, and more than 1,000 employees. It did $191 million in revenue in 2018.

Carter discovered the logistics and transportation industry immediately after graduating from the University of Kentucky with a degree in economics. He worked for a freight brokerage firm in Cincinnati and quickly realized he enjoyed the fast pace — and the opportunity to make a significant amount of money.

“There is a big potential for those who work really hard to earn a pretty decent income,” he says, adding that his old truck from his college days was starting to die. “So earning enough to buy a new car was pretty great. I have a desire to be pretty self-sufficient, and I dreamed of doing nice things and having cool stuff.”

It was that job where Carter met his business partner, Scott Biddle. The two hit it off and decided to expand Scotlynn’s Canadian operations into the U.S.

Name: Ryan Carter

Age: 36

City of residence: Naples 

Employer: Scotlynn USA Division Inc. 

Title: Co-founder and executive vice president

Birthplace: Evansville, Indiana

Years on the Gulf Coast: Nine

Marital status/children: Married with two sons, a 2.5-year-old and an 8-months-old

Alma mater/degree: University of Kentucky: economics

Where is the best place to network? Volunteering and charitable events

What's the best business lesson you've ever learned? Always take of those who are taking care of you and your business. 

What's your top tip for being productive? Every morning, write down your plan for the day, and stick to the time constraints you gave each activity. 

What's the weirdest job you've ever had? Worked at forest ecology lab in college sorting out leaf litter by species.

What community group or organization are you most involved with? Vistage and several charitable organizations

If you could have a side hustle, what would it be? Dealing exotic cars.

What's your favorite off-hours activity? Spending time with my boys or flying

What's your favorite board game or video game? Monopoly

What's the top item on your bucket list? Dive with great whites near South Africa

Where is your happy place? Sitting in the driver's seat of a Porsche

What's your favorite podcast? Dan Carlin's "Hardcore History"

Who/what is your favorite musical artist/band? Alan Jackson

Who would play you in a movie about your life? Matthew McConaughey

What was your first album/tape cassette/CD? Meatloaf

What was your first concert? Kid Rock

What's one song that will get you out on the dance floor? "Party Rock Anthem" — LMFAO

What's your favorite karaoke song? Do not have one

What instrument/role would you play in a band? The fiddle

Please describe yourself in three words. Observant, even-keeled and ambitious


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