UNIONTOWN, Ohio—Personnel changes greet the growing ChemSpec Ltd. in 2020, as the chemical and polymer distribution company says goodbye to a veteran member of its leadership team.
Rich Dee, ChemSpec's chief operations and chief financial officer with nearly three decades of service to the company, announced his retirement effective Jan. 1, according to ChemSpec. Dee will be succeeded in the operations role by nine-year ChemSpec veteran Chris Wagner, the company's former law and marketing director, and in the financial post by Aaron Shaffer, now the controller and vice president of finance.
"He had no intentions I believe of becoming a senior level manager of a chemical distribution firm when we hired him back in the mid-90's," said Dave Moreland, ChemSpec's president and CEO, said of Dee. "He was just looking for a good job to help support his family, but he was dedicated and smart, and helped grow the organization to what it is today."
According to the company, Dee started as operations manager for Alcan Rubber & Plastics, the Paris-France-based Safic-Alcan subsidiary that would later become ChemSpec.
Dee's responsibilities increased measurably during his tenure, as the company grew from a $5 million venture in the early 2000's to a company with more than $60 million in sales today.
"We're incredibly thankful and grateful to Rich," Moreland said. "I appreciate all he has done as my business partner."
ChemSpec said Wagner, in his new position as chief operations officer, will use his experience as a former Army officer and business litigation attorney to assist the leadership team. Shaffer, as new CFO, has a bachelor's degree in finance from the University of Akron and worked as an accountant in the service industry for 10 years before joining ChemSpec seven years ago, according to the company release.
ChemSpec also will make changes in the to its sales and marketing team.
Brian Sears, a sales representative with ChemSpec for 13 years, will become Northern U.S. territory manager. Lucas Moreland, who has been with the company for more than a decade, has been named the Southern U.S. territory manager. And John Stephenson will move from sales representative to marketing director, ChemSpec said.
"Staff turnover is a rare occurrence at ChemSpec, and fortunately, in this case, while we are losing a very seasoned manager, we have several smart, young professionals taking-on more responsibility and leadership who have all been here for quite some time and are excited to continue to grow our business in a healthy, sustainable manner," Moreland said.
ChemSpec distributes chemical additives and polymers to the North American elastomer mixing industry, as well as coatings, adhesives and sealants, inks, plastics and cosmetics compounding market segments.