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  • 09 Jun 2021

Transition of leadership at Michelman

Michelman has appointed Dr Richard (Rick) Michelman as the next president and CEO, effective January 1, 2022

US-based coating specialist Michelman has appointed Dr Richard (Rick) Michelman as the next president and CEO, effective January 1, 2022. At that time, longtime leader Steven J. Shifman, president and CEO since 2003, will assume the role of executive chairman.

Founded in 1949, Michelman has been one of the industry leaders for over seven decades in developing and applying sustainable and water-based surface modification technology. This leadership transition assures that the company will continue to be family-owned and managed for the long term.

‘I am tremendously proud of having led and grown our company globally for nearly 20 years,’ said Shifman. ‘Moreover, I have strived to lead the company so that our ability to grow sustainably for good has been enhanced. Michelman is comprised of hundreds of values-based and purpose-driven associates, and I am appreciative that we continue to leave a positive impact on the communities we serve and the world around us.’

Shifman led the company’s global expansion throughout his tenure. It now maintains production facilities in North America, Europe, and Asia, product development and technical service centers in several major global markets, and a worldwide team of over 400 professionals.

‘Rick is uniquely qualified to serve as Michelman's next president. His leadership, customer relationships, and proven performance make him the natural choice to succeed me,’ added Shifman. ‘He has been with the company for more than 25 years, acquiring broad operation and market knowledge by serving in many organizational roles, most recently as chief technology officer and executive vice president for Americas and the printing and packaging business segment. Furthermore, his background as a chemist gives him a true understanding of the sustainable solutions Michelman continues to innovate globally.’

‘Steve is leaving us in a solid position. We are set up to be more vital and impactful than ever before, and I am ready to lead the business into the future as the coatings, printing and packaging, and fibers and composites markets continue to need our sustainable solutions,’ commented Dr Richard Michelman. ‘Our global associates and deep customer relationships have positioned us for continued growth in these markets that embrace sustainability. It’s an exciting time at Michelman.’

The leadership transition will take place over the next six months, being completed by January 1, 2022.


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