Volume 13, Issue 4 - May 2012

Ones To Watch

Serious Execs Change Roles; Porat Now CEO
Serious Energy, based in Sunnyvale, Calif., confirmed that Marc Porat, Serious Energy’s co-founder, was appointed as its CEO. He takes over for Kevin Surace, previous CEO and chairman of the board, who will now continue to serve as chairman of the board. Surace is also a co-founder.

Porat has founded and led technology companies since 1983, according to the Serious website. Since 2002 he has created three companies focused on the built environment, concentrating on sustainable construction materials and methods to help reduce climate change.

According to Surace, this isn’t the first time the two have changed roles.

“Marc Porat was cofounder at Serious with me. He was the company’s first CEO,” Surace told DWM. “Then we traded and he was chairman and I became CEO. Then I also became chair a couple years ago and now he is CEO again and I am still chairman.”

Surace says that they both work together daily.

Smith Named President of Hafele America Company
The Häfele Group, with headquarters in Nagold, Germany, has named Paul K. Smith as president of Häfele America Company, the company’s North American subsidiary. Smith succeeds John Hossli who is retiring as president after serving in that role since 1999. Smith will oversee all company operations in the United States.

Smith joined Häfele in mid-2011 after a career at Haworth Inc., where he served as vice president, directly responsible for all North American products and the development of the company’s global product portfolio. His experience at Haworth included executive positions in the company’s architectural interiors and wood businesses. Prior to Haworth, Smith served in management positions with General Electric Co. and Whirlpool Corp..

FeneTech Inc. Names Two Vice Presidents
FeneTech Inc. of Aurora, Ohio, has added two senior level executives to its management team. Horst Mertes has become vice president of sales and marketing and Craig Morris has become vice president of engineering.

Mertes, an industry veteran with more than 25 years of sales experience, has been with FeneTech for four years, most recently serving as the director of global sales. In this new role, he will be responsible for coordinating the company’s worldwide marketing efforts as well as assembling a global sales team.

Morris has been with FeneTech for 12 years, serving as a software engineer, group manager and, most recently, as the director of engineering. In this new role, he will be responsible for managing the growing operations of the entire FeneTech engineering staff.

Thermal Industries Makes Personnel Changes
Some personnel changes have occurred recently at Thermal Industries, namely its president David Rascoe is no longer with the company and won’t be replaced, according to Tyson Schwartz, vice president of sales and marketing. Todd Rascoe, former vice president of operations, was also replaced by Dan Novak.

Schwartz adds that Thermal was the last of the Atrium companies to be restructured. Namely, Atrium’s other divisions no longer have individual presidents, which is part of the reason for David’s departure.

“Dividing the decision-making among three people enables us all to make decisions more effectively,” says Schwartz. Those three key decision makers include Schwartz, Novak and Evan Kaffenes, chief financial officer, who reports directly to management at Atrium, Thermal’s parent company.

“We work well together and decisions are made quickly and ultimately products can get to market quicker,” says Schwartz.

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