Washington — Bill Carteaux, president and CEO of the Society of the Plastics Industry Inc., has announced he has been diagnosed with early-stage leukemia and is undergoing treatment in the Washington area.
In an April 29 letter to SPI's national board, Carteaux, 56, said he contracted dengue fever from a mosquito bite while on a plastics industry trip to Cuba in March. When symptoms continued longer than expected, his doctors expanded testing and consulted specialists, who quickly arrived at the diagnosis of “a very treatable leukemia,” according to the letter.
“Who would imagine that contracting dengue fever would save my life?” Carteaux wrote. “The doctors tell me that we're lucky we caught this so early, and only did so because of the events of the last month. They are, and I am, optimistic about my prognosis. I started chemotherapy earlier this week.”
While undergoing treatment, Carteaux said he will curtail his travel schedule but is still running the association and will remain involved in all major decisions. He also singled out board chair Jim Murphy, the president and CEO of Davis-Standard LLC, and Jon Kurrle, SPI's executive vice president for advocacy and the senior-most staff member in the trade group's Washington office, as available for questions and assuming some extra duties, as necessary.