Pettit grew up in Manassas, Virginia, where he was introduced to racing at an early age. His father, Mike Pettit, owned and operated American Performance, a local small business that specialized in Race Car Engineering. By age 12, he had become proficient in welding, sheet metal fabrication, and was learning body work and paint. By the time Pettit graduated high school, he had already developed several years of hands-on experience in this field and was proficient in engine building, rear-end setup, body work and paint, all general areas of automotive mechanics.
Pettit worked for Merchants Tire and Auto as a senior in high school and for a short period thereafter where he became a fully trained ASE-Certified automotive technician.
Pettit enlisted in the Marine Corps in 1994, where he served on active duty until 2004. He was assigned as an avionics technician. During his service in the Marine Corps, he continued with his passion for racing, working part-time fabricating cars. He also built and campaigned a Super Pro car that he raced throughout Maryland and Virginia.
Joining VSE in 2004, Pettit’s VSE experience includes Division Quality Manager from 2004-2005, Federal Group Quality and Health, Environmental, and Safety (HES) Director from 2005-2011, and Corporate Vice President of HES from 2011-2013. Currently, he serves as the Vice President of Engineering and Logistics where his responsibilities include profitability and loss, customer relations, direct and indirect financial and budgetary accounting, contract and subcontract management, task performance and monitoring, quality assurance/control, safety, training, facilities, recruiting, progressive engagement, marketing, proposal development and management, and long-range planning. The Engineering and Logistics Division is the largest Division within VSE, averaging more than 900 personnel and providing contracted Engineering and Logistics support to DOD customers, including depot-level maintenance, engineering support, rebuild, refurbishment, and reset and modernization of legacy assets.
Pettit has a Bachelor of Arts in Organizational Management from Ashford University in Iowa.