Cheryl Merchant, CEO of TACO Comfort Solutions, a 100 year old, third generation family-owned global company based in Cranston, RI. TACO Comfort Solutions engineers and manufactures high efficiency indoor heating, cooling, and plumbing comfort systems.
Cheryl of has spent 35+ years in manufacturing. She has held leadership positions with industry giants like GM, Mazda, Ford and Lear Corporation and led teams in the U.S., Mexico, Canada and throughout Europe and Asia. Cheryl spent 19 years as the President and CEO of Hope Global, a manufacturing company with over 2,000 employees and operations in the U.S., Mexico, Czech Republic, China and Brazil. During that period, Hope Global grew five times in revenue and became a Tier II leader in the Automotive Industry.
Cheryl has received awards over her career that include Providence Business News Rhode Island Leadership Award (2001, 2014), New England Business Woman of the Year (2014), Mentor of the Year PBN RI (2016), Crain’s Women in Manufacturing of the Year (2018), Trailblazer in Business / Cheryl Watkins Snead Award (2018). She holds two Honorary Doctorates from New England Institute of Technology for Humane Letters and Bryant University for Business.
Her current Board work includes being a Trustee (Secretary and Chair of Student Affairs as of 2012 – Present) for Bryant University, Board of Governors for the RI Hospital Foundation (2019) and The Advisory Board to University of Rhode Island (2016 – Present).
In 2019, Cheryl joined Taco as President of Taco Family of Companies, North America. In March of 2020, Cheryl became CEO to Taco Family of Companies Global operations. Taco, a third-generation, family-owned company based in Cranston, RI, engineers and manufactures high-efficiency heating, cooling, and air quality comfort systems. Taco has sales and manufacturing locations in the United States, Canada, Italy, Switzerland, the Czech Republic, Germany, Poland, and Vietnam. Cheryl resides in Lincoln, RI and integrates her business life with being the mother of a bright and ambitious 14-year-old boy and "leader-in-the-making" 11-year-old daughter.