2012 Hall of Fame: Jim Minarik
Many in the industry know Jim Minarik for his leadership roles at 12-volt companies such as Directed, with its Viper and Clifford brands, as well as Clarion, Precision Power, Orion, and others. But during his career he has also helped to shape other areas of the CE industry, including personal computer peripherals and high-end home audio.
Minarik segments his career in what he calls "three 10-year buckets." The first bucket was his early years at Altec Lansing and Sparkomatic, where he was recruited after receiving his MBA from Penn State. At the time, Minarik had some great job offers from some prestigious companies, including Exxon, Corning Glass and Procter & Gamble. "But looking back now and realizing I could have spent my career in the petroleum, glass or toilet paper businesses instead of being involved in the dynamic and ever-changing CE industry, I realize how truly fortunate I have been," he said.
When Minarik was at Altec, one of the big projects he was involved with was creating speakers for personal computers. Back then the typical 1.5-inch driver buried inside a PC was considered the pinnacle of what any consumer would ever need. But as 'multimedia' became the driving force behind PC sales, Minarik and Altec wound up selling the speakers to IBM, Dell and countless consumers who were looking for better sound for gaming and other applications.