National Plastics Center President David Hahn has retired, effective April 1, according to G. Watts Humphrey Jr., chairman of the museum's board.
``David accepted the job with a time horizon. He felt that this was an appropriate time to move on,'' Humphrey said.
Humphrey said Hahn will continue to serve as a consultant for the center, which is in the latter stages of its Campaign for Education. The effort focusing on plastics education has raised more than $7 million and is ``within striking distance of its target,'' according to Humphrey.
Hahn will continue as a board member of the Plastics Academy and help direct the Plastics Hall of Fame induction ceremony scheduled for June. Hahn was unavailable for comment.
Hahn joined the center in January 2002 after a national search. He replaced Valerie Wilcox, the center's first executive director, who was instrumental in shaping NPC from an old school building into a renovated center.
During Hahn's tenure, NPC pushed the education part of its agenda. It expanded its national outreach program in which PlastiVans are dispatched throughout the country to teach children from kindergarten through grade 12 about plastics.
In that time period, the center developed new in-house educational programs and increased its number of historical artifacts. NPC also constructed new exhibits focusing on the environment and an expanded Plastics Hall of Fame. The center's Web site has evolved to focus on education.
Before coming to Leominster, Hahn had a long career in the plastics industry with Milacron Inc., including a stint as president of its Autojectors Inc. subsidiary. Hahn also served as chairman of NPE in 1997.
Humphrey said there is capable support staff as well as an active board and executive committee that will run the facility. He said the board will have to define its plans before deciding on new leadership.
``We're looking at it as a transition,'' Humphrey said.