MAYFIELD HEIGHTS, OHIO — Ferro Corp., the maker of specialty chemicals that is resisting a hostile takeover bid by A. Schulman Inc., has removed the "interim" tag from the title of the man who has been its president and CEO since last November.
Ferro said its board has appointed Peter T. Thomas president and CEO, effective immediately. Thomas, 57, had served as Ferro's operating vice president of Polymer and Ceramic Engineered Materials.
William B. Lawrence, a former TRW Inc. executive who had served as acting chairman of the board since last November, has been named chairman.
"Peter's leadership has been instrumental in the development and execution of our value creation strategy, which already is yielding improvements in returns, cost savings and earnings," Lawrence said. "We are pleased to announce that, after an extensive process in which both internal and external candidates were evaluated, the board determined that Peter is the best person to lead Ferro forward."
Thomas also has been appointed to the Ferro board of directors. With the addition of Thomas, Ferro's board now consists of 10 directors, nine of whom are independent.
Thomas, 57, began his career with Ferro in 2000 as director of sales for Polymer Additives, and has held positions of increasing responsibility at the company. Prior to joining Ferro, Mr. Thomas was vice president of the Oleochemical-Derivatives business unit for Witco Corp.
Lawrence, 68, served as executive vice president, general counsel and secretary of TRW before the company's sale to Northrop Grumman in December 2002. He retired from TRW in February 2003.