Our Team

ROD SMITH - President and Co-founder

I started in the industry in 1984 as a bench technician during college. I opened Freedom in 1998. In my spare time I like to read, fish, hunt, play tennis and spend time with my family. My wife and I have 7 kids ranging in age from 6 to 28. I was born in Marietta, GA and am a lifelong resident of the area. Three of our kids are adopted from Ukraine and 1 from Bulgaria. Adoption is close to our hearts and we are strong orphan advocates. My favorite part of my job is spending time in front of the customer.

JOHN SLOCUM - Vice President and Co-founder

I have been in the industry for over 30 years and started Freedom in 1998. In my spare time I like to spend time with my family and good friends at Lake Arrowhead either boating or hitting golf balls to every possible spot around their golf course. My wife and I have two sons, aged 29 and 28, who share my love of cars, motorcycles, and working with the folks here at Freedom. They are a constant source of pride and joy in my life. My primary duty here at Freedom is Engineering and product development. I graduated from Southern Polytechnic State University with a Bachelor’s degree in Electrical Engineering Technology and a Master’s in Technology Management.

MIKE VEGEAIS - Vice President of Sales

Over 40 years of industry experience including expertise in territory management, account management, channel management and managing sales teams, both domestic and international. Includes 28 years with Gilbarco, and 4 years as Corporate Director of Business Development with a large multi-branch Distributor. I enjoy working with customers and distributors to solve problems and improve their businesses. I earned a BAS degree from Guilford College, in North Carolina. I have traveled extensively throughout the US and internationally. My wife, Lisa and I have moved 5 times, and now live in north Georgia. In my spare time, I enjoy the outdoors, primarily hiking and bird hunting.

RYAN BLACK - Vice President of Product Management

I have been with Freedom since March of 2004. I’ve had a dual role of IT support and sales during most of my career here. Starting January 2015 I transitioned into the new role of VP of Product Management. In this role I work closely with all departments to develop new items to add to our large inventory of parts. The best thing about working at Freedom is the daily interaction with great people, both co-workers and customers. I graduated from Mercer University with a B.S. in MIS. When I'm away from work you can usually find me golfing, riding motorcycles and traveling.

CRAIG BENNETT - Inside Sales

I am Canadian born and served in the military for 12 years. I started in the Industry as a Service Tech for the largest Canadian Distributor at the time. I moved to the US and married a wonderful lady from Alabama in 2002. I worked for the next 7 years with a Alabama-based Wayne Service company as a tech and then a Florida-based Gilbarco/Wayne company as the lead tech. My wife and I started our own Petroleum Service company in 2009 and for the next 6 years ran it at a profit. I have extensive knowledge of all brands of equipment from a purchasing and Service Tech perspective. I can help you troubleshoot the issue before you place your order. Call me with any technical questions for any brand. I look forward to serving you.

FELIPE MALDONADO - Inside Sales

I spent my first 10 years in the petroleum industry with two of the largest distributors on the east coast. I started as a warehouse helper, adding in purchasing and inventory responsibilities while rising to the position of warehouse manager. My experience also includes roles in construction, as a technician and inside sales - all at the distribution level. In my 15 years in the industry I have gained a solid base of knowledge in Gilbarco, Veeder-Root, Wayne, Tokheim, Franklin Fueling and VeriFone product lines. I started with Freedom Electronics in 2012 as a bilingual salesman covering Latin America and the Southern U.S. I enjoy spending quality time with my wife and kids.

NATHAN SIMS - Inside Sales

Freedom Electronics is customer focused and that’s why I’m glad to be a part of this company. I have been in the customer service industry for twenty plus years. I have worked with some of the top companies in the Atlanta area and I have built some long lasting relationships with my customers. I look forward to continuing to build relationships with Freedom Electronics’ customers. I have a loving wife with two very active boys ages 9 and 16 whom I love spending time with. In my spare time I enjoy playing drums at church and my Rock band.

THOMAS BUTLER - Inside Sales

I have been employed with Freedom Electronics since July of 2000. I started out as a technician working on vapor vacs, printers, and all types of circuit and display boards. I graduated from Chattahoochee Tech in 2008 with a degree in electronics. I have enjoyed my time working with all things electronic. I moved into the sales department in January 2015 because I enjoy working with people and I love a new challenge. I have been married for 11 years and we have a 4-year-old son. I enjoy traveling and I will never pass up a cruise vacation. I also play in softball leagues throughout the year. I love working at Freedom Electronics because of the great owners, amazingly supportive co-workers, and the lasting relationships that I am making with my customers.

JESSICA BUTLER - Inside Sales Support

I have worked at Freedom a little over 14 years. I started when I was in college and have had a variety of roles including Accounts Receivable and now Inside Sales. I have a bachelor’s degree in Business Management with an emphasis in Human Resources from Kennesaw State University. I’ve been married for 11 years and we had our first child in 2013. My hobbies include traveling and sports (of any kind), especially softball. Every day at Freedom Electronics is a new experience & I work with resourceful co-workers who are full of initiative - that is what I like most about working here.