Lincoln Electric Holdings this week announced that John Stropki Jr., who has been chairman, president and CEO since 2004, will become executive chairman of the board, and Christopher Mapes will be named president and CEO, both effective Dec. 31. As executive chairman, Stropki will work closely with Mapes to ensure a seamless transition.
Mapes has served as chief operating officer since Sept. 2011, and has been a member of the board of directors since Feb. 2010.
“This leadership transition is a direct result of the board’s and John’s conscientious focus on developing a deep, talented and experienced management team at Lincoln Electric,” said Harold Adams, lead director and chair of the nominative and corporate governance committee. “Chris has demonstrated outstanding leadership skills, strategic insight and operational expertise during his time as a director and as a member of the company’s executive management team, with responsibility for all of Lincoln’s global businesses and product development initiatives.”
Adams said that during Stropki’s tenure as CEO, the company embarked on the largest expansion of its global manufacturing footprint in its history, successfully integrated key acquisitions, achieved record earnings in 2011, and consistently increased its quarterly dividend.
Lincoln is a leader in the design, development and manufacture of arc welding products, robotic arc welding systems, plasma and oxyfuel cutting equipment, and has a leading global position in the brazing and soldering alloys market. Lincoln Electric is based in Cleveland.