Caterpillar names group president, vice presidents

Caterpillar announced several personnel changes April 15.

Group president Richard L. Thompson will retire July 1. He has administrative responsibility for Caterpillar’s gas turbine and reciprocating engine businesses as well as corporate research and development duties. He began his career with Caterpillar in 1983 as vice president of customer services at Solar Turbines, a Caterpillar subsidiary. He also worked as president of Solar Turbines and vice president of Caterpillar’s engine division before being elected to his current position in 1995. Later this year, Thompson will turn 65, Caterpillar’s mandatory retirement age for officers.

Donald M. Ings, vice president of Caterpillar’s building construction products division, will also retire July 1. He joined Caterpillar in 1970 as an engineer for Solar Turbines, and served as Caterpillar vice president and president of Solar Turbines from 1993 until moving to his current role in 1998.

Caterpillar’s board of directors has named Stuart L. Levenick group president and executive office member. He is currently vice president of Caterpillar’s Asia Pacific division. Levenick joined Caterpillar in 1977 in sales development.

Jim Owens, chairman and chief executive of Caterpillar, said the company has decided to divide the marketing and operations responsibilities in the Asia Pacific region between two vice presidents to reflect the growing significance of that market. The board elected Rodney C. Beeler, who will be based in Singapore, vice president of marketing for the Asia Pacific division. He is currently global champion of Caterpillar’s rental services business as well as general manager of the company’s North American rental business. Richard P. Lavin, to be based in Tokyo, will serve as chairman of Shin Caterpillar Mitsubishi and assume oversight of operations for the Asia Pacific division. He has led Caterpillar’s people initiatives for the past two years as vice president of the human services division. He joined the company as an attorney in 1984.

Sidney C. Banwart vice president of Caterpillar’s systems + processes division, will replace Lavin as head of the human services division. He joined Caterpillar as an engineer in 1968. Banwart previously worked as vice president of Caterpillar’s technical services division and component products division.

Edward J. Rapp, vice president of EAME marketing, will become vice president of the company’s building construction products division. Since joining Caterpillar in 1979, Rapp has worked in several worldwide locations including North America, Africa and Europe.

The board of directors has named Paolo Fellin, currently industry manager for Caterpillar’s North American commercial division, to replace Rapp as vice president of EAME marketing. Fellin joined Caterpillar as a sales trainee in 1980, and has spent the majority of his career in Europe and Africa.

John S. Heller, currently director of Caterpillar’s global information technology solutions group, will become vice president of the company’s systems + processes division and chief information officer. Since joining Caterpillar in 1973, Heller has held a variety of positions managing IT support for finance, manufacturing, marketing and dealer systems in Europe and North America.