Building materials producer Saint-Gobain announced Tuesday that John Crowe has been named president and chief executive officer of the French-based firm’s North American holding company and its largest subsidiary.
Saint-Gobain said it has about 600 employees in its Akron-area operations that include Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics in Aurora, Saint-Gobain Crystals in Hiram, Saint-Gobain NorPro in Stow and Saint-Gobain’s subsidiary Norandex in Hudson.
The company said Crowe has served in leadership positions within its group for 30 years.
He was president of the Aurora and Hiram units and most recently president of a global abrasives division with more than 13,000 employees and 75 manufacturing facilities in 24 countries.
In Ohio, Saint-Gobain said, it has nearly 1,000 employees; overall the company employs 19,000 people in 265 locations across the United States and Canada. In the United States and Canada, Saint-Gobain said it had sales of approximately $7.3 billion in 2010.
Saint-Gobain said Crowe’s new duties will be effective Thursday. He is succeeding Gilles Colas, who will return to headquarters in Paris as senior vice president for global strategic developments.
The change also means Crowe will head the company’s CertainTeed unit, succeeding Peter Dachowski, who retires today as president and CEO after 35 years.
CertainTeed Corp. interior and exterior building products include the names Saint-Gobain Abrasives, Saint-Gobain ADFORS (previously known as Saint-Gobain Technical Fabrics), Vetrotech Saint-Gobain North America, Saint-Gobain Glass, Saint-Gobain Solar, Saint-Gobain Performance Plastics and more.
Saint-Gobain chairman and CEO Pierre-Andre de Chalendar said in a statement that Crowe’s appointment recognizes him as “an exceptional leader with strong operational skills.”
Crowe, 57, said in a statement that he will work on innovation in Saint-Gobain’s operations and meet the needs of a “rapid pace of change” and “exciting new building technologies” in the industry.
He said CertainTeed’s products reduce noise, improve air quality and save energy.
Other areas of work, he said, involve lighting, energy-efficient glass “that automatically switches from clear to tinted” and investments in solar power.
Crowe has a Bachelor of Science degree in chemical engineering from Clarkson University in Potsdam, N.Y., and an MBA from Boston College. The company said he completed Columbia University’s executive program in business administration.
Saint-Gobain’s North American base is in Valley Forge, Pa., where Crowe will move. Crowe currently lives in Massachusetts.
The company has more than 265 locations in North America and approximately 19,000 employees.
The company said it has been recognized by the U.S. Environmental Protection Agency as a 2009-10 Energy Star Partner of the Year.
Overall, the company said it had 2010 sales of $53.2 billion with operations in 64 countries and about 190,000 employees.