John J. McDonough, a Chicago native and 1958 graduate of the University of Notre Dame, has had extensive experience in finance and general management in several industries. Through 1970, he was one of the principal officers of Litton Medical Products Inc., a wholly owned subsidiary of Litton Industries. From 1970-75, he was vice president and treasurer of American Television and Communications Corp., the large cable television operation now owned by Time-Warner Inc.
In 1975, he joined Blount Inc. as vice president and chief financial officer, heavily involved in acquisitions and divestitures. While with Blount, McDonough continued his involvement in cable television through a series of personal investments. In 1979, he left Blount to found National Tele-Communications Services Inc., a cable television company later merged with Harte-Hanks Communications.
McDonough joined Newell Co. in November 1981 as senior vice president-finance. He left the firm in April 1983 to found Gendex Corp., a manufacturer and distributor of dental x-ray equipment, handpieces and cutting instruments, and served as that firm's chairman and CEO until its June 1993 merger with Dentsply International Inc. Until February 1995, he was vice chairman and CEO of Dentsply, a century-old maker of dental and x-ray equipment.
Since April 1995, he also has been president/CEO of McDonough Capital Co. LLC, an investment management company.
A Newell director since 1992, McDonough rejoined that company as vice chairman and chief executive officer in January 1998.
Now 63, he is overseeing the integration — or "Newellization" — of Rubbermaid Inc., following Newell's purchase of the Wooster, Ohio, housewares giant for nearly $6 billion. The merger, announced last October and completed in March, created the world's largest maker of durable consumer products. The two firms together employ some 32,000 and operate more than 100 manufacturing plants worldwide. Newell Rubbermaid's sales for 1998 totaled nearly $6.18 billion.
In this decade alone, Newell has made more than 20 major acquisitions that represent more than $5 billion in sales. In addition to Rubbermaid and its Little Tikes subsidiary, Newell now owns such well-known brand names as Rolodex and Eldon desktop and computer accessories, Anchor Hocking glassware, Calphalon cookware, Goody and Ace hair accessories, and Berol and Eberhard Faber markers and writing instruments.
McDonough also serves as an adviser or board member of several civic and charitable organizations. He and his wife, Marilyn, reside in Lake Forest, Ill.