BY MARC SILVESTRINI, REPUBLICAN-AMERICAN
Chemtura Corp. has named a new president, chief executive officer and chairman of the board to succeed Robert L. Wood.
Craig A. Rogerson, 52, the president, chief executive officer and a director of Hercules Inc. until its acquisition by Ashland Inc. last month, will step in as Wood's successor effective immediately, the Middlebury-based company said late Monday.
Wood, 54, one of the chief architects of the 2005 merger that created Chemtura, resigned for personal reasons, the company said.
Chemtura has been plagued by liquidity-related concerns during the past several months and its shares have fallen more than 80 percent since reaching a 52-week high of $8.81 in June. In November, the company said it would suspend its dividend, slash capital spending and reduce inventories in an effort to shore up its liquidity.
Chemtura shares, which are traded on the New York Stock Exchange under the symbol CEM, lost 15 cents Tuesday to close at $1.35 per share.
Rogerson joined Hercules in 1979, taking a position in the company's Water Management Chemicals division. In April 1997 he left Hercules to join Wacker Silicones Corp., where he served as president and CEO. He rejoined Hercules in May 2000 as vice president of business operations in the company's BetzDearborn division, eventually being named vice president and general manager of that division in August 2000.
Prior to being named CEO of Hercules in December 2003, Rogerson held a variety of senior management positions with the company, including president of the FiberVisions and Pinova divisions, vice president Global Procurement and chief operating officer.
Rogerson serves on the boards of directors of PPL, the Society of Chemical Industry, First State Innovation, and the American Chemistry Council.
"We're very pleased to have an executive of Craig's experience and proven abilities to lead our company going forward, particularly during these challenging economic times," said C.A. "Lance" Piccolo, a co-lead director of Chemtura's board of directors. "We are grateful to Bob Wood for his leadership and many contributions to the company during the past three years. We wish him all the best in his future endeavors."
Wood succeeded Vincent Calarco as president and chief executive of Crompton Corp. in January 2004. He was named chairman of the board in April 2004 when Calarco stepped down from that post.
Wood, a graduate of the University of Michigan where he played football under legendary Wolverine coach Bo Schembechler, arrived in Middlebury after spending 27 years with Dow Chemical Co. Just prior to joining Crompton, he had been president of Dow's $5.5 billion Thermosets and Automotive business group.
In July 2005 Wood helped orchestrate the merger of Crompton and Great Lakes Chemicals Corp. of Indianapolis, the transaction that formed Chemtura Corp.
Chemtura, a global manufacturer of specialty chemicals, crop protection and pool, spa and home care products, had sales of $3.7 billion in fiscal 2007.
The company employs about 5,100 workers worldwide, including about 600 in Connecticut. Most of its Connecticut-based positions are at its corporate headquarters in Middlebury, with the others spread between its facilities in Bethany and Naugatuck.
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