Gulf States Toyota Names Automotive Industry Veteran Eric Williamson as President and General Manager

HOUSTON–(BUSINESS WIRE)–Eric Williamson, an accomplished automotive industry leader with more than three decades of experience across Gulf States Toyota (GST) and The Friedkin Group, has been named president and general manager of GST. Williamson’s appointment is effective immediately and he will continue to be based in Houston where GST is headquartered. In his new role, Williamson will be responsible for overseeing one of America’s most successful private companies and one of the world’s largest distributors of Toyota vehicles and parts with 156 Toyota dealerships in GST’s five-state region of Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi, and Louisiana.

Williamson has spent 35 years in various leadership roles at the organization and has a deep understanding of GST’s operations and position within the industry. He has worked closely with dealer partners and Toyota, touching nearly every area of the business throughout his career. Williamson’s previous positions with GST include director of marketing, director of accessory business development, director of fleet operations and vice president of Human Resources.

“Eric has established himself among the most capable and innovative leaders in the automotive industry and will support our highly valued partnership with Toyota Motor North America,” said Dan Friedkin, Chairman and CEO of The Friedkin Group and Chairman of GST. “I have had the pleasure of working with him for many years and am confident his leadership skills and strategic vision will position the company for continued success.”

For the past decade, Williamson has served as executive vice president at The Friedkin Group where he helped spearhead new opportunities in the industry for GST and other automotive companies across the portfolio. He has also served on the Greater Houston Partnership’s Transportation Committee where he helped identify and address mobility issues that affect the region’s transportation industry, network and infrastructure.

“It’s an honor to be appointed to this role,” said Williamson. “Having spent more than three decades in various capacities at Gulf States Toyota and The Friedkin Group, my passion for this organization runs deep and I am excited about the opportunity to help chart its course into the future. I have enjoyed re-engaging with our dealers and identifying opportunities to drive our collective success. With the support of Dan Friedkin, the Friedkin family and GST’s dedicated and talented associates, my focus will remain on ensuring that GST continues its commitment to innovation and growth while providing the superior service that our dealer partners, Toyota and its customers expect.”

About Gulf States Toyota

Gulf States Toyota (GST) is one of America’s most successful private companies and one of the world’s largest distributors of Toyota vehicles and parts. Founded in 1969 in Houston, Texas, GST teams with Toyota Motor Sales USA and over 156 Toyota dealerships in our five-state region—Texas, Oklahoma, Arkansas, Mississippi and Louisiana—to meet the rising demand for Toyota vehicles and parts. Gulf States Toyota is part of The Friedkin Group.

About The Friedkin Group

The Friedkin Group is a privately held consortium of automotive, hospitality, entertainment, sports and adventure companies. These organizations include: Gulf States Toyota, GSFSGroup, US AutoLogistics, Ascent Automotive Group, Westside and Northside Lexus, Accelerated Solutions Group, The Friedkin Group International, Copilot Capital, Auberge Resorts Collection, Imperative Entertainment, 30WEST, NEON, AS Roma, AS Cannes, Diamond Creek Golf Club, Congaree and Legendary Expeditions. The Friedkin Group is led by Chairman and CEO Dan Friedkin. For more information, visit


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