Mercante, Amy S.

Amy Mercante PPG Industries, Inc.
National Sales Manager

Amy Mercante always envisioned herself working in a lab wearing a "white lab coat surrounded by test tubes and Bunsen burners." However, things didn't go quite as planned, as she found herself working for PPG, developing and formulating automotive paints. "When I was a senior at W&J, I got an offer from PPG and although it was not what I had envisioned, the job was too good to pass up," she explains. "My experiences at PPG in chemistry, sales, and marketing have kept me continually challenged and I find my work quite satisfying.

"As a national sales manager at PPG, Mercante has grown with the company and repeatedly shown her capabilities as a leader. Mercante made PPG history in 2004 when she became the first woman promoted to sales manager for the industrial coatings division's west zone. During her three-year tenure in that position, Mercante was responsible for 19 states and more than $100 million in sales. Her most fulfilling endeavor, however, has been her work with PPG's Women's Leadership Council, where she served as chairperson for the council's events for two successive years. "It was the first time in PPG's history that 150 women have been in the same room at the same time," she says. "The ability to work and share ideas with other women leaders is very satisfying."

For Mercante, the education she received at W&J has been of vital significance to her success at PPG. "W&J's rigor and liberal arts atmosphere gave me versatility to succeed in an industry I knew virtually nothing about," Mercante says. "PPG has a positive history hiring W&J students, so they trusted me to be able to learn on the job."

Despite her busy schedule and frequent travels, Mercante has remained dedicated to W&J, visiting as frequently as possible and attending local alumni events. "I came back for my 15-year reunion in 2006," she recalls. "Reconnecting was quite exciting and brought back some wonderful memories. I'm really glad I was able to see how the school has grown."