Arete

[Ancient Greek Term] Translates to

Becoming your best self.

Arete

[Ancient Greek] Translates to

Becoming your best self

Don Tocco is a business leader, artist, writer, and motivational speaker.

 

He is the founder of D.L. Tocco & Associates, Inc., a national marketing company based in Troy, Michigan.  The company specializes in developing business for industrial construction companies who work throughout the United States, Canada and Mexico.  The firm’s collective private bid opportunities secured from industry since inception has surpassed $30 billion.

Don began his career and company with $45,000 in debt and no previous business experience, mentors or formal education. He attributes his success to a commitment to teamwork, service to others, patience, determination, and God’s grace.

Since 1977, he has spoken to over 325 youth groups, charging no fee and receiving no travel reimbursements.  Students from every state in the U.S. and 70 countries, have become fans of his exciting “can-do” ideas and encouragement.  His boundless passion for helping others learn to realize their potential culminates in creating a successful life.

Author and Artist

Don’s love of the natural world, desire to help others, zest for life and spirituality inspire his writing and artwork. The latest edition of his book, Art of the Journey, provides a comprehensive overview of his poetry, paintings and sculptures. Don’s bronze legacy sculpture of J. Edward Lundy, former CFO of Ford Motor Company is displayed in the Automotive Hall of Fame, his sculpture of Harold Arthur “Red” Poling is on display at the Poling Global Learning Center at Spring Arbor University.  

Dynamic Speaker and Presenter

Don Tocco is passionate about helping others learn to move forward, utilize their God-given talents and define & build a successful life on their own terms. Please inquire for more information on customized presentations or programs for your organization or event. 
  • Have a positive “can do” attitude.
  • Make every day better than yesterday.
  • Take courageous action to reach your goals.
  • Have the determination to remove all barriers.
  • Embrace life with joyful enthusiasm.

Athlete and Philanthropist

For 10 years, Don Tocco has personally competed against some of the finest Division II athletes at Hillsdale College. Why did this business leader take on college athletes? In Don’s own words, “To show them how it’s done.” Created to fund projects at Hillsdale College and inspire excellence, the ‘Tocco Challenge’ is an annual competition between Don Tocco and Hillsdale College athletes in a series of events that include basketball, baseball, football, tennis and chess. 

D.L. Tocco and Associates, INC.

In 1974, Don established D.L. Tocco & Associates, Inc., a national company based in Troy, Michigan specializing in business development and marketing for industrial construction companies working throughout the United States, and in Canada and Mexico on certain disciplines.  The firm’s collective private bid opportunities secured from industry has surpassed $30 billion

Highlights

Lecture at Hilllsdale College – Discovering Your God Given Talents

Using powerful examples from some of his friends and mentors, Don Tocco gives a moving speech to Hillsdale students about finding their talents and diligently and enthusiastically using them. 

Remembering Joe Girard

The world has lost one of its’ great motivators and ardent instructors on how to use enthusiasm and selling skills to make things happen.  Joe earned his stripes by selling an average of 6 cars every working day for 12 years and was welcomed into the Guiness Book of World Records as the greatest salesman in the world. 
 
Don and Joe became close friends after meeting in 1979.  The friendship grew and 14 years later after Joe proposed marriage to his beautiful future bride Kitty, he asked Don to be their best man.  What a wedding!!!  
 
Another notable fact is that Don quoted Joe Girard in over 400 presentations to students from every state in America and 70 countries – citing Joe’s famous pep talk as the best way to start the day.  Joe would exclaim in a mirror before going to work “I Feel Good – I Feel Great – Look out world, I’m coming out one more time!”  It really is an awesome way to start any day. 
 
The world has lost a great man who will never be forgotten and will continue to be recognized in every youth presentation that Don Tocco does in this lifetime.

Watch Don Tocco’s latest presentation at Hillsdale College, The Art of the journey

6/21/18 Northwood University – L.A.B. Camp – “Learning About Business”

On June 21, 2018 — for the second year, Don Tocco was invited to address Northwood University’s special student outreach program entitled “Learning About Business (L.A.B.).  This five day residential program coordinated by Professor John Gustincic, offers a concentrated course on how to launch, promote and fund a new enterprise concept.

Don’s segment of the program was near the program’s conclusion and was designed to help augment the necessary and dynamic phases of business which include selling, market approach, sustainability, and also how to overcome resistance and marketplace impediments.  Student feedback was exceptionally positive!

9/7/17 Hillsdale College Special Event – Detroit Marriott Troy

​Hillsdale College – bastion of free enterprise, capitalism and committed to protecting the constitution, invited over 500 supporters to join its’ President, Dr. Larry Arnn, in a special presentation “The Constitution and the Salvation of Free Government.”  Don Tocco, longtime friend, fan and supporter of Hillsdale College, was asked to host and act as the Master of Ceremonies at the event on September 7th, 2017 at the Detroit Marriott Troy.

It is reported that Dr. Arnn and Tocco had a friendly sparring match during the introduction session at which time Dr. Arnn poked some friendly jabs at Don, claiming that he somehow was rigging the sports competition these past 10 years, in which he competes against Hillsdale’s best athletes.  Since Tocco has recorded a 7 win, 3 loss record against these tough Division II ball players, Dr. Arnn swears there must be scoring manipulation (with a grin!).

This joviality was enjoyed before  Dr. Arnn’s very serious discussion about Hillsdale College’s mission in the modern day of politics.  Please listen and enjoy Don’s introduction of Dr. Larry Arnn that evening.

9/7/17 Hillsdale College Special Event – Detroit Marriott Troy

​Hillsdale College – bastion of free enterprise, capitalism and committed to protecting the constitution, invited over 500 supporters to join its’ President, Dr. Larry Arnn, in a special presentation “The Constitution and the Salvation of Free Government.”  Don Tocco, longtime friend, fan and supporter of Hillsdale College, was asked to host and act as the Master of Ceremonies at the event on September 7th, 2017 at the Detroit Marriott Troy.

It is reported that Dr. Arnn and Tocco had a friendly sparring match during the introduction session at which time Dr. Arnn poked some friendly jabs at Don, claiming that he somehow was rigging the sports competition these past 10 years, in which he competes against Hillsdale’s best athletes.  Since Tocco has recorded a 7 win, 3 loss record against these tough Division II ball players, Dr. Arnn swears there must be scoring manipulation (with a grin!).

This joviality was enjoyed before  Dr. Arnn’s very serious discussion about Hillsdale College’s mission in the modern day of politics.  Please listen and enjoy Don’s introduction of Dr. Larry Arnn that evening.

7/20/17 Automotive Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony

On July 20, 2017, the Automotive Hall of Fame once again recognized four giants from the world of the Automotive Industry:  Alberto Bombassei, August Fruehauf, Jack Roush, and Edward Welburn.  Additionally, Bill Chapin, the Hall’s President, gave honorable mention to past Ford Motor Company Chairman, Don Petersen for his major role in bringing exciting new products to market under his tenure, including the Ford F150 truck.

Also featured were Don Tocco’s four sculptures of Ford Motor Company’s top leaders of the past 70 years, including the famed Ed Lundy, two past Chairmen – Don Petersen and Red Poling, and the more recent Ford phenomenon, Alan Mulally.  Bill Chapin went on to say that the four busts would be a permanent part of the Hall of Fame exhibits.

6/22/17 Northwood University “LAB” Learning About Business

This Northwood University event draws high school students who want to Learn About Business and is tailored for future entrepreneurs and business owners who will require the fundamentals of such enterprise.  Don received his first invitation to participate in this annual week-long team building and leadership program.  His topic for this year’s program was entitled “Entrepreneurship: The Road Ahead”.  Using the real world tools that Don has developed for his own national marketing company, these were integrated into an hour-long presentation that included 20 minutes of vigorous Q&A.  Student responses were exceedingly positive!  Keep an eye on this group, because there were plenty of future business owners who will be stepping forward to take their place in the years to come.
This Northwood University program provides instruction about business.  Historically, 40% of attendees become Northwood University students.  A win-win all around!

6/22/17 Northwood University “LAB” Learning About Business

This Northwood University event draws high school students who want to Learn About Business and is tailored for future entrepreneurs and business owners who will require the fundamentals of such enterprise.  Don received his first invitation to participate in this annual week-long team building and leadership program.  His topic for this year’s program was entitled “Entrepreneurship: The Road Ahead”.  Using the real world tools that Don has developed for his own national marketing company, these were integrated into an hour-long presentation that included 20 minutes of vigorous Q&A.  Student responses were exceedingly positive!  Keep an eye on this group, because there were plenty of future business owners who will be stepping forward to take their place in the years to come.
This Northwood University program provides instruction about business.  Historically, 40% of attendees become Northwood University students.  A win-win all around!

This Northwood University program provides instruction about business.  Historically, 40% of attendees become Northwood University students.  A win-win all around! 

Y. Kumar

“I would like to thank Mr. Tocco for his incredible speech, it truly inspired me to work hard for what I believe in, and through his story of improbable success, I know that I can succeed by having the same mindset that he had. Thanks so much.”

S. Boylen

“There is an endless amount of positive things I could say about him. He sure was a motivator. I loved his energy and his powerful words gave me shivers down my spine. It was truly an honor to have been part of that crowd. Best speech/speaker I have ever heard.”

T. Penfold

“I really enjoyed listening to Mr. Tocco’s talk and it made me open my eyes up to the possibilities that are out there and how life is what you make it.”

4/28/17 interview with john mcelroy of autoline – the #1 network for the auto industry!

Please take a moment to view Don’s recent podcast with Autoline where he discusses his mentors from Ford Motor Company and art sculptures of these influential individuals.

4/28/17 interview with john mcelroy of autoline – the #1 network for the auto industry!

Please take a moment to view Don’s recent podcast with Autoline where he discusses his mentors from Ford Motor Company and art sculptures of these influential individuals.

4/20/17 Hillsdale College – “The Four Seasons of Life!”

Don was invited back to Hillsdale College to speak to an audience of 600+ students regarding “The Four Seasons of Life!” and share the wisdom he has learned from prominent mentors in his own life.  The event was held at the Searle Center at Hillsdale College on April 20, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.

4/20/17 Hillsdale College – “The Four Seasons of Life!”

Don was invited back to Hillsdale College to speak to an audience of 600+ students regarding “The Four Seasons of Life!” and share the wisdom he has learned from prominent mentors in his own life.  The event was held at the Searle Center at Hillsdale College on April 20, 2017 at 7:00 p.m.

4/20/17 Hillsdale College – “The Four Seasons of Life!” Q & A Session

9/14/16 Don delivers the eulogy for beloved long-time friend, Hugh O’Brian (aka 60’s TV Star Wyatt Earp). Hugh had over 55 million viewers, young and old, but only one fan got to do his eulogy. 

7/21/16 Don attends the Automotive Hall of Fame Induction Ceremony (Pictured here with Don Petersen – former Ford ceo, Alan Mulally – former ford president and ceo, and Mark Fields – Former ford ceo).

Hillsdale Collegian – Don Tocco to speak on leadership for the 13th year in a row!

Click on this link to be redirected to the article written by Jessie Fox, a Sophomore at Hillsdale College, that not only tells about Don’s program on April 14, 2016, but also a bit of background on the man himself.

Hillsdale College – “Learning How to Fly”

Hillsdale College invited Don to speak in front of 400+ students to assist in providing them with the tools they need to be successful both professionally and spiritually.

The event was held at the Searle Center at Hillsdale College on April 14, 2016 at 7:00 p.m.