Caterpillar Inc. last week announced vice president Bob Williams, 61, will retire after more than 43 years with the company. Williams has been a Caterpillar vice president since 2004 and currently has responsibility for the Americas Operations Division. AOD includes all manufacturing operations in Aurora, Ill., Decatur, Ill., East Peoria, Ill., North Little Rock, Ark., Caterpillar Brazil Limited and CMSA Mexico. The division manufactures motor graders, wheel tractor scrapers, large mining and quarry & aggregate trucks, hydraulic excavators, wheel loaders, track-type tractors, pipelayers and various machine components. Williams will retire on June 1. A replacement for Williams will be announced in the near future.
“Bob’s leadership and deep lean manufacturing experience was instrumental in Caterpillar’s ability to effectively manage some of our largest and most complex manufacturing facilities as we first responded to record-breaking demand for our products from 2005 through 2008 followed by the rapid decline in demand that occurred in 2009,” said Caterpillar chairman and CEO Jim Owens. “In addition, Bob has continually demonstrated exceptional values-based leadership for his organization and the rest of Caterpillar, setting a high standard for Caterpillar leaders to follow in the years to come."
Owens also praised Williams for his leadership in the successful implementation of the Caterpillar Production System (CPS) at facilities within AOD and for the development of Caterpillar’s new state-of-the-art motor grader facility located in North Little Rock, Ark.
Williams began his career at Caterpillar in 1966 as a machinist apprentice in East Peoria. He became a shop foreman in 1974 and went on to a series of leadership positions in manufacturing and technology. In 1989, he became a factory manager in the Track-Type Tractors Division. He moved to Decatur in 1993 to assume the role of technical resources manager in the Mining & Construction Equipment Division. Williams became the general manager of Mapleton foundry operations for the Performance Engine Products Division in 1998. He was appointed director of manufacturing in the Operations Support and Technology Department of the Technical Services Division in 2002. Williams was also director of manufacturing research and development in Caterpillar’s Technology and Solutions Division before being named a vice president in 2004.
Caterpillar Inc. is headquartered in Peoria, Ill.