KUALA LUMPUR, Malaysia-The International Natural Rubber Organization chose James Hagerty as the new buffer stock manager May 20. Hagerty, manager of reinforcement purchasing at Bridgestone/Firestone Inc., was elected by member consensus at a regularly scheduled meeting of the International Natural Rubber Council in Kuala Lumpur.
He succeeds current buffer stock manager Aldo Hofmeister, and will move to Kuala Lumpur to assume his new post in mid-July.
Hagerty said he was ``quite pleased'' with the council's decision.
``I initially had the support of the U.S. government, and apparently I was acceptable to other members of the council,'' he said.
``I'm anxious to get to Kuala Lumpur and get started on my new job.''
The INRO buffer stock manager buys or sells natural rubber to stabilize world prices, based on the price ranges set under the International Natural Rubber Agreement.
Other candidates to succeed Hofmeister included John F. Fiedler, former executive vice president of North American Tires for Goodyear; Stephen Lincke, senior vice president of the Alan L. Grant Rubber Division of Imperial Commodities Corp.; and Howard Evans, a former employee of Goodyear in Europe.
Hagerty has spent almost his entire career with Bridgestone/Firestone, beginning with the former Firestone nearly 26 years ago.
He started on the firm's financial staff, but has spent about half his career in purchasing.
Only time will tell whether Hagerty will have a job after Dec. 31.
INRO member countries began talks last month in Geneva to renegotiate the agreement, but decided to put off discussions of crucial financial and buffer stock issues until October.