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Greg Croce of Chevron Products Co. was named president of the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers for the year 2018-2019 at its annual meeting in Minneapolis. He joined the company in 2000, where his roles have included global account manager/OEM service engineer, North American product line specialist, base oil optimization specialist and currently technical manager of the Delo heavy-duty diesel engine oil brand.
Croce replaces Michael Anderson of Falex Corp. and is joined by vice president Michael Duncan of Daubert Chemical Co., secretary Paul Hetherington of Petro-Canada Lubricants and treasurer Ken Hope of Chevron Phillips Chemical Co. STLE’s newest board members are Aaron Greco of Argonne National Laboratory, Robert Jackson of Auburn University and Farrukh Qureshi of Lubrizol Corp.
Regina Harm was promoted to president of Afton Chemical Corp. She has spent 11 years with the company and served as senior vice president and chief operating officer prior to her promotion. She replaces Robert Shama, who was appointed vice president of strategic original equipment manufacturers.
Ergon, Inc. announced that its founder, Leslie B. Lampton, Jr., died of natural causes April 17 in Jackson, Mississippi. He was 92. Born in Memphis, Tennessee, Lampton joined the Unites States Navy in 1943 and served during World War II and the Korean War. After obtaining a bachelor’s degree in business from the University of Mississippi in 1948, he managed a Firestone tire shop in Jackson after completing the company’s management training program in Memphis. He founded Ergon in 1954 as a fuel delivery business for construction companies and led the firm for 64 years. He is survived by his four sons, Leslie, Lee, William “Bill” and Robert, who serve on Ergon’s board of directors, as well as 10 grandchildren and 12 great grandchildren. His wife, Dorothy, died a few days after his death .
BASF appointed senior vice president Uta Holzenkamp to lead its fuel and lubricant solutions global business unit. She succeeds Martin Widmann, who moved to another role at the company’s Care Chemicals division.
Kristiaan Van Severen joined Belgium-based Kemat as product manager for polyisobutylenes..
GP Global appointed five senior traders to its new offices in Hull, United Kingdom and Seoul, South Korea. Steven Taylor, lead for physical supply, and Susan Needham, trading operator, oversee the company’s office in Hull. Senior Bunker Trader Robin Park will lead operations in South Korea. The oil manufacturer and trader also named bunker traders Chris Holroyd and Dave Matthews to lead its existing office in London.
Greg Wade was named CEO of Tank Holding Corp., which manages polyethylene storage tank manufacturers Norwesco and Snyder Industries. Wade was hired by Norwesco in 2005 and held various roles in the company, including vice president of sales and marketing.
KPI Bridge Oil hired Zoe Tang as bunker trader at its Singapore office. The company also promoted Alysha Chambers to group marketing manager.
Peter Vanacker will become CEO of Neste Oil on Nov. 1. Vanacker currently serves as CEO of German specialty chemicals company CABB Group. He will replace Matti Lievonen, who will retire from the company Oct. 31.
Schaeffer’s Specialized Lubricants appointed Jim Carroll executive vice president of operations, a newly created position within the company. He has had a 20-year tenure at Schaeffer’s, most recently serving as vice president of technical services.
Ted Selby, a lubricant testing pioneer whose inventions are used worldwide to unlock the secrets of oil rheology, oxidation, deposits and more, will receive STLE’s highest technical honor, the International Award. The accolade will come during the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers’ annual meeting, which expects to draw some 1,600 delegates to Minneapolis, May 20-24.
Selby began researching fuels and lubricants in 1952, first at General Motors and then at Dow Chemical. Armed with a master’s in physical chemistry from Wayne State University in Detroit, in 1969 he founded the Savant Group of companies in Midland, Michigan, and expanded it to include test developer Savant Inc., bench test manufacturer Tannas Co., and the Institute of Materials, which monitors the quality of engine oils worldwide.
Numerous groundbreaking test concepts and methods, including several ASTM standards that are integral to engine oil specifications, owe their existence to Selby, who is Savant’s vice president, technical development. Among his far-reaching inventions are the Tapered Bearing Simulator; the Thermo-oxidation Engine Oil Simulation Test; the Scanning Brookfield viscometer technique; the Phosphorus Emissions Index and the Selby-Noack oil volatility apparatus.
Read more about Selby's accomplishments in the April 18 issue of Lube Report Americas.
Sea-Land Chemical Co. made several promotions to its executive and senior management teams. Craig Lundell is now senior vice president of commercial operations for the United States and Europe. Christy Henley serves as vice president of sales at the company. Jack McKenna, who is national account manager and vice president of business development, will also assume the responsibilities of vice president of Sea-Land Chemical Canada. Mark Christeon is national account manager for strategic accounts in addition to leading business development in Mexico and Latin America. Sakura Olah was named to the newly-created position of director of business processes, adding to her responsibilities as director of international operations at the distributor's divisions in Canada and Europe. Jeff Levandowski was named director of commercial operations after serving 10 years as supply chain manager, while Joe Ramey was promoted to director of accounting and management of information systems. David Smith was named business manager for Sea-Land Chemical Europe.
Lubrication Specialties Inc. hired Brian Merz as director of national account sales. Prior to joining the company, he served as senior key account manager for Idemitsu Lubricants Americas and has held similar roles at Shell Oil Products and Pennzoil-Quaker State Co.
Sean Lalonde was promoted to director, global base oil and wax, at HollyFrontier. He most recently served as manager of base oil, white oil and automotive original equipment manufacturer business in the Americas.
Christina May was named business line manager at Pilot Chemical Co. She most recently held the role of market development manager at Cincinnati-based metalworking fluid and coatings manufacturer Michelman.
Victor Franco Paredes is the new CEO of Lubricantes de Americas (Lubral). He joined the company in 2015 as director of sales and operations.
Lubrizol promoted J. Brian Pitts to corporate vice president, chief financial officer and treasurer. He succeeds Brian Valentine, who will leave the company later this year.
U.S. Lubricants promoted Tony Springer to industrial channel director for the company’s products. He has over 20 years of sales management experience and has spent nine years working at U.S. Lubricants.
Hydrodec CEO Chris Ellis resigned from his role in April due to the illness of a family member. Lord Moynihan, chairman of the rerefiner, was named interim CEO and executive chairman.
Harvey Lewis Golubock, who worked at Witco Corp. for 28 years and then became president and COO of American Refining Group for 14 years, died Feb. 24 in New York City. He was 75.
Holding a chemical engineering degree from City College of New York and an MBA from Rutgers University, Golubock’s career at Witco spanned from 1969 to 1997. In that time his roles included planning analyst, assistant to the president, assistant to the chairman, vice president and general manager, vice president of corporate communications, vice president supply and distribution, and finally group vice president for lubricants.
Among Witco’s assets he oversaw was Kendall Refining in Bradford, Pennsylvania, the world’s oldest continuously operating crude refinery and the birthplace of Kendall motor oil. When Witco sold off its lubricant assets in 1996 (including the Kendall brand), no one wanted the refinery. It at last was sold in 1997 to private investor Harry Halloran--who immediately recruited Golubock to run it.
He and the new owners at ARG revitalized the base oil business and launched a line of finished lubricants under the new BradPenn name. ARG also made Gulf brand lubricants under license for the Northeast U.S., and became a key supplier of railroad engine oils after acquiring that business line from Valvoline.
After retiring in 2011, he resided in Suffern, New York. His wife Barbara survives him, along with daughters Janis and Rhona, and other family.
Read more about Golubock’s life in the April 2018 issue of Lubes’n’Greases.
Pilot Chemical Co. named Glynn Goertzen vice president of corporate development. Goertzen also serves as president of Pilot’s subsidiary, Liquid Minerals Group.
Fuchs Lubricants hired Alex Holmes as head of industrial product management. He previously held a similar role at Lubrizol.
Heike van de Kerkhof was named head of Castrol’s lubricants business in Europe and Africa. She most recently worked at the Chemours Co. (spun off from DuPont’s performance chemicals businesses), where she was vice president, global sales of Titanium Technologies and president of Chemours’ international operations.
Anthony Kruczek was appointed senior product manager at B’laster Corp. He previously held product management roles at JohnDow Industries, Accel Performance Group and PolyOne.
Shishir Joshipura, managing director of SKF India, has resigned from the company, effective at the end of this month. Joshipura served eight years in his role.
American Refining Group assembled a new team to manage sales of its blended lubricants. Todd Cawley serves as business manager for blended lubricants. Cody Leatherman is product manager for base oils and blended lubricants, and Luke Rawding is regional sales manager. Mike Greene was named account specialist for private-label businesses.
Cathy Novak joined Palmer Holland as lubricant and metalworking fluid technical service specialist. She most recently served as technical sales manager at Lanxess’ Rhein Chemie business unit for six years and was also technical director at Eastern Oil, to which she sold her FormCut Engineered Fluids business.
Dr. Donald “Don” Smolenski started his own consultancy, Strategic Management of Oil (SMO), LLC, in Saint Clair Shores, Michigan. He provides consulting in engine oil specification and test development;, oil condition sensor development and validation, lubricant energy savings measurement, as well as management of hydraulic fluids, metal removal fluids, industrial used oil and indirect chemicals. Smolenski has a background in chemistry and chemical engineering and over 38 years of professional experience in the lubricants industry, including roles at Evonik Oil Additives and General Motors. He most recently served as original equipment manufacturer liaison manager for North America at Evonik, was involved in the development of engine oil tests and specifications such as ILSAC GF-5 and GM’s Dexos, and co-created GM’s patented Oil Life Monitor. He can be reached at email@example.com.
Renkert Oil added three new hires to its sales team. Spyro Dimitratos joined the company as vice president of marine sales. Celeste Taldo was hired as logistics coordinator, while Matt Monsour is regional sales manager for base oils and process oils in North America.
Pilot Chemical Co. appointed several employees to new roles at its technology center in Cincinnati. Rick Shook, former corporate technical manager, is now vice president of research and development. Former Product Manager for Pilot Chemical’s business line Bill Rohrer was named director of technology, and Research Chemist Bob Golden is now research fellow. Patrick McCarthy, president of Pilot Polymer Technologies (formerly ATRP Solutions), will also serve as vice president of technology and innovation.
Motiva named Brian Coffman president and CEO, replacing Dan Romasko. Coffman served as senior vice president of refining for Andeavor Corp., formerly known as Tesoro Corp.
MidContinental Chemical Company made several personnel changes. Technical director Phil Korosec retired after 12 years at the company. Bernard Roell, who most recently served as vice president of research and development at RSC Bio Solutions, replaces him. District Sales Manager for the Western United States Ray Sparling also retired after 10 years at MCC. He was succeeded by Jeff Davidson, who was previously area sales manager. The company also appointed Charlie Schulz district sales manager for the Southern U.S.
ATIEL, the Technical Association of the European Lubricants Industry, named Brussels-based transportation industry expert Marco Digioia president. He replaces Peter Tjan, who retired from the organization in December.
Carl Bechem announced that John Steigerwald, president of the German company’s subsidiary in the United States, Bechem Lubrication Technology, retired in December after over 18 years with the manufacturer. Heike Hundertmark, managing director of Carl Bechem Mexico, took over Steigerwald’s role.
Tim Brown, CEO of American Refining Group, stepped down from his role in January. He was appointed CEO in 2015 after serving as executive vice president, v.p. of sales and marketing and director of refinery sales. ARG owner Harry Halloran, Jr., replaces him.
Kristy Babb now serves as executive director of the Automotive Oil Change Association. Babb is also the principal and executive v.p. of FSB Core Strategies, which contracted with AOCA for management services in January.
Palmer Holland announced that Regional Sales Manager Joe Hunt died December 20 at the age of 56. He joined Palmer Holland in November 1993 and had a total of 30 years of experience in the chemical industry. Hunt was president of the Pittsburgh Paint and Coatings Association in 1998, and was also active in the Chicago Paint and Coatings Association and the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers. He is survived by his wife, Cyndi, and two sons, Jay and Brendan.
Kris Patrick was named president of Ergon Refining and Ergon West Virginia, the company’s naphthenic and paraffinic base oil operations. He joined Ergon as a process engineer in 2000 and most recently served as senior v.p. of refining, planning and supply.
Scott Fenwick, technical director at the National Biodiesel Board in Jefferson City, Missouri, is the new chairman of ASTM International’s Committee D02 on petroleum products, liquid fuels and lubricants.
ExxonMobil named John Verity president of ExxonMobil Chemical. He replaces Neil Chapman, who is now senior vice president of ExxonMobil Corp. The oil major also announced that Bryan Milton will preside over ExxonMobil Fuels & Lubricants Co., which combines the company’s refining and marketing operations into a single unit. Both appointments are effective Jan. 1
South Korean refiner SK Lubricants made several leadership changes. Senior v.p. Tak Cha has been promoted to executive v.p. of SK’s base oil business. Jay Kim, former head of the company’s European regional headquarters, was appointed head of base oil business optimization and development. Former president of SK Lubricants Americas Tony Jin was promoted to v.p. of SK’s newly formed global base oil marketing office at its Seoul headquarters.
Pamela Butcher was named CEO and president of Pilot Chemical. She replaces former president Michael Scott.
Nexeo Solutions appointed Michael C. Miller technical manager of metalworking fluids and lubricants at its laboratory facility in Houston.
Christine Banaszek is now sales manager at Charles Ross & Son Co. She joined the industrial mixing equipment manufacturer in 2005 as an application engineer for inside sales and has also been part of its technical services group.
Lubrication Specialties Inc. hired Robert “Bob” Miller as director of sales, and Kyle Fischer was appointed director of marketing.
Crystal O’Halloran took the reins as executive director of the National Lubricating Grease Institute. She succeeds Kim Hartley, who moves into the newly created position of NLGI meeting planner.
Sea-Land Chemical announced that president Joseph Clayton will retire at the end of the year. He served as president for 16 of his 34 years with the company and will continue to be involved as a member of its board of directors.
Jeremy West was named national sales manager for North America at Pilot Chemical. He replaces Bob Rechtin, who will retire from the company in early 2019.
Robert “Bob” Olree, who chaired the ILSAC/Oil Committee and steered it through the creation of the GF-5 engine oil specification, died Oct. 19 after a recent illness. He was 74.
Olree began his career at Ethyl Corp.’s research lab in Ferndale, Michigan, where he worked for 17 years. He spent a year at American Motors before joining General Motors, where he worked on automotive fuels and lubricant development for 23 years. He was a lubricants industry representative for GM and then Intertek, and was active as a consultant in industry meetings regarding the ILSAC GF-6 upgrade and engine test protocols.
Born in Grand Rapids, Michigan, Olree obtained a bachelor of science degree at Calvin College, as well as a both a bachelor and master’s degrees in engineering at the University of Michigan. He is survived by his wife Judy, three children, a brother, grandchildren and extended family. A memorial service is scheduled Nov. 11 in Troy, Michigan.
Chevron Corp. and its affiliate company Chevron Oronite announced several changes to leadership roles. Oronite president Desmond “Des” King will retire Feb. 1 after 36 years with the company. He will be replaced by Bruce Chinn, general manager of Chevron Corp.’s Pascagoula, Mississippi, refinery, effective Jan. 1. Chris Cavote, general manager of Chevron Corp.’s refinery in Burnaby, British Columbia, and chairman of Chevron Canada, will replace Chinn. Michael K. Wirth, vice chairman of Chevron Corp.’s board and executive vice president of midstream and development, was elected chairman and CEO of Chevron Corp., effective Feb. 1. He succeeds John S. Watson, who will retire after 37 years with the company.
Fluitec recently appointed Pierre Vanderkelen CEO. He has served in numerous roles in the company since 2009, including regional sales manager in Europe, general manager for Fluitec in Asia-Pacific and most recently vice president of international sales.
Valvoline chairman William A. Wulfsohn stepped down from his role on the company’s board of directors in September. Wulfsohn, who is also chairman and CEO of Valvoline’s former parent company Ashland Global Holdings, guided the company through its transition as a publicly traded company after its initial public offering last year. Stephen F. Kirk was named as Wulfsohn’s replacement.
Brandt Jensen joined Hydrotex as Utah division partner, where he will serve the company’s fuel, food processing and freight customers in upper and eastern areas of the state including Salt Lake City, Ogden, Provo and Logan.
Polaris Laboratories named Michael Wells national account manager for North America. Wells had previously worked as territory sales manager at Polaris, and also served in sales and business development roles at BureauVeritas and AllFuel Services before rejoining the company.
Robert Claire “Bob” Hakeman died August 10 at the age of 85 in Huron, Ohio. He joined Sea-Land Chemical Co. in 1975, where he was executive vice president for over 40 years. After retiring from the company in 2000, he remained a member of its board of directors until 2015. He was also a member of various industry organizations, including the Society of Tribologists and Lubrication Engineers, the Oil Chemists Society and the Cleveland Chemical Association.
Born April 23, 1932 at the Hakeman family’s farm near Sanborn, Iowa, he obtained a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University before serving in the United States Army. After a brief period in the military, he worked as a salesman prior to joining Sea-Land Chemical.
He is survived by his wife, Chris Ann Hakeman, sons Robert, Michael, Philip, Jim, Nicky and Matthew and daughter Lori, in addition to three brothers, 15 grandchildren, three great-grandchildren and numerous nieces and nephews.
Sea-Land Chemical Co. promoted Jennifer Altstadt to chief operating officer. She was previously director of marketing and later senior vice president of operations and strategy at the company.
Emerald Performance Materials appointed Wendy Herbst as general manager for its antioxidants and accelerators business, which is a result of the company’s split of its polymer additives and nitriles groups into separate business units.
Len Badal is now vice president of sales and business development at BioBlend. He previously held senior management roles at Chevron and ExxonMobil.
Pilot Chemical made two new hires. Bill Woods is technical marketing manager for the company’s Mason Chemical division, while Paul Washlock was named distribution sales manager for North America.
James “Jim” L. Newcombe, 73, died of cancer at his family home in Indiana on Aug. 13. The longtime face and voice of Paramins’ Detroit Trends (later Infineum Trends), he wrote the additive company’s popular roadshow and delivered it to thousands of lubricant blenders and marketers each year, leavening the technical details with dry wit and tart asides.
No less visibly, Newcombe was in the thick of the often heated negotiations between oil and additive companies and the auto industry in the late 1980s and early ‘90s that led to the ILSAC GF-series of engine oils. He was a fierce advocate for the oil/additive side: Wielding technical points like a rapier, he gained the attention and respect of both allies and adversaries, many of whom became lifelong friends. He championed collaborative solutions, too, helping to make the American Chemistry Council’s Code of Practice a bedrock of all API-licensed oils.
Newcombe was raised in St. Louis, and worked for Amoco Chemicals after graduating from the Missouri School of Mines & Metallurgy. His 35-year career took him to Hatco Chemical (owned then by W.R. Grace), Exxon Chemical Paramins and finally its successor Infineum International, where he served as marketing manager and liaison to the global auto industry. He served as chairman of SAE International’s Technical Committee 1 on automotive engine oils in the late 1980s, when TC-1 had a pivotal role in setting engine oil standards.
In the 1970s, “Newc” unleashed his adventurous side as racecar driver, running a successful SCCA team with his wife Pat that won the Northeast Championship several years in a row. Later, as Exxon's sponsor representative with its winning NASCAR racing team, he proudly stood in Victory Circle with Geoff Bodine at Daytona.
Besides his love of racing, he also was an avid golfer and active as a community volunteer. Survivors include his wife Patricia Lee, two daughters, a granddaughter, sister and brother, and extended family.
Brenda Lim was appointed bunker and lubricant trader at KPI Bridge Oil’s office in Singapore.
Chevron Lubricants announced that Farrukh Saeed, vice president of the company’s division in Asia-Pacific, retired from the company after more than 34 years. The company formed two new business units in the region following Saeed’s retirement: Baomin Guo was appointed general manager for the Greater China lubricants unit in Beijing, while Rochna Kaul is now general manager for the company’s Asia/Pakistan lubricants business based in Singapore.
Hydrotex hired Todd Hakl as South Dakota division partner to serve fuel and agricultural industries in the state. Stephanie DiGiovanni also joined the company as Wisconsin division partner, to manage the needs of the company’s food processing, industrial and transportation customers.
Dow Chemical has shuffled several executive roles. Pedro Suarez, president for Dow North America, was named chief commercial officer. He replaces Joe Harlan, who will retire after the merger of Dow with DuPont in August. R. Matt Davis, corporate vice president of public and government affairs, added the responsibilities of corporate vice president and of Suarez’s previous role.
Master Fluid Solutions (formerly Master Chemical Corp.) appointed Kyle R. Stoffer chief financial officer.
Paul Dufresne established lubrication services provider Reliability Playbook, to assist manufacturing facilities in developing and sustaining equipment maintenance and lubrication programs. Dufresne previously worked at Trico Corporation, Georgia-Pacific Chemicals and Koch Industries and has 28 years of experience in lubricant maintenance and reliability roles. Based in Umatilla, Florida, he can be reached at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Manfred Jungk, Ph.D, founded consultancy MJ Tribology to provide training, strategy development, technology scouting and evaluation services for the field of specialty lubrication. Jungk spent nearly 30 years at Dow Corning, where he held executive positions in research and development, technical service and marketing for the company’s Molykote brand lubricants. He can be contacted at email@example.com.
KPI Bridge Oil promoted Oliver Denal to senior bunker trader at its Denmark office.
Jason Denlinger was named Pilot Chemical’s new corporate environmental, health and safety manager.
Chevron Phillips Chemical Co. made several changes to its executive management. Peter Cella, president and CEO, retired from the company. Mark Lashier, who served as executive vice president of commercial operations, took over Cella’s role. Senior v.p. of manufacturing Scott Sharp was promoted to executive v.p. of manufacturing. Ron Corn, senior v.p. of projects and supply chain, is now senior v.p. of petrochemicals. Dave Morgan, senior v.p. of polymers, became senior v.p. of polymers and specialties, while Jim Becker, v.p. of specialties, will now report to Morgan as v.p. of polymers. Dave Smith, former senior v.p. of petrochemicals, was appointed senior v.p. of corporate planning and technology. Jim Telljohann, v.p. of corporate planning and development, assumed the role of v.p. of specialties.