ARLINGTON, Va. (April 26)—Richard E. Mericle II has been name executive director of the Alliance for the Polyurethanes Industry, effective in early May. He replaces Fran W. Lichtenberg, who resigned earlier this year but remained at the helm of the organization until her successor was picked. Mericle brings more than 30 years of polyurethanes and plastics industry experience to the job, having worked for leading multinational chemical companies. Most recently he was director of business services and director of the urethane chemicals operation at BASF Corp. He also has been active with API as a combustibility issue champion and member of the organization's management committee. Lichtenberg, who plans to set up a consulting service when she leaves API, has been part of the trade association since 1980 and has led API and its predecessor, the SPI Polyurethanes Division, since 1985.