Charles Smith, a 22-year veteran of General Shale, has officially assumed the role of CEO for the Johnson City, Tn.-based company. Mr. Smith succeeds longtime CEO Richard L. (Dick) Green, who retired April 1.
General Shale is the North American subsidiary of Wienerberger AG and a leading manufacturer of brick, one of the world’s oldest green building materials.
Mr. Smith previously served as General Shale’s president and COO, and has worked in a number of supervisory and management positions for the company.
“Charles has helped steer General Shale’s operations through a major economic downturn, and he played an instrumental role in revitalizing the company’s product development,” said Heimo Scheuch, CEO of Wienerberger AG. “This has resulted in an expanded product line that has increased consumer demand in new and existing markets. Charles’ experience with General Shale’s strategic model will help position the company to continue its successful course of growth.”
Early in his career with General Shale, Mr. Smith’s leadership roles included several plant management positions. As regional production manager, he was directly responsible for the operation of five brick plants, and he played a key role in company expansions and major capital projects.
During his tenure as vice president of engineering and research, Mr. Smith was responsible for ensuring operational excellence at all plant locations, while guiding research and development efforts for new product opportunities. In 2007, he was named executive vice president of operations, providing oversight for research and engineering divisions throughout the U.S., as well as operations at the company’s manufacturing plants across the country.
“For the past 20 years, General Shale has been fortunate to have an exceptional leader in Dick Green,” Mr. Smith said. “Under his leadership, General Shale made it a priority to stay ahead of and be responsive to consumer trends and preferences within the industry, while remaining committed to the ideals of quality, service and stewardship that are the foundation of the company. I am honored to have the opportunity to lead this great company on its continued path of persistent, sustainable growth, and look forward to working with our outstanding executive team and entire General Shale family to bring the highest-quality, innovative products to our customers.”
Mr. Smith holds a bachelor’s degree in industrial technology with a minor in business management from Tennessee Technological University in Cookeville, Tn. A resident of Johnson City, Mr. Smith and his wife, Rita, have a son, Taylor.