Ashland units trade R&D leaders in 'brain exchange'

Ashland Inc., Covington, Ky., announced that two of its executives will 'swap' positions for a period of 6 months.

Oct 18th, 2002

By OGJ editors
HOUSTON, Oct. 18 -- Ashland Inc., Covington, Ky., announced that two of its executives will 'swap' positions for a period of 6 months.

The move—which is designed "to strengthen Ashland's technological expertise"—involves Frances E. Lockwood, senior vice-president, technology, for Valvoline Co., and Donald S. Mueller, vice-president, research and technology innovation, for Ashland Specialty Chemical Co. The exchange became effective Oct. 9.

"This 'brain exchange' will enable us to begin unleashing the creative power hidden within our wholly owned businesses," said Ashland CEO and Pres. James J. O'Brien. The initiative, which is the first of its kind for the company, will be repeated in the future, O'Brien said.

Lockwood was named to her current position in 2001. In her position, she oversees chemists and technicians at Valvoline's new product laboratory in Lexington, Ky., as well as Australia, the Netherlands, and the company's North American packaging plants. Lockwood joined Ashland in 1994. Over the last 25 years, she has served in a variety of R&D, planning, and technical management positions in the oil, automotive, and metalworking industries. In 1996, she assumed responsibility for Valvoline's global products and technical services.

Mueller joined Ashland Chemical in Dublin, Ohio, in 1991 as vice-president, R&D. He started his career in 1973 when he joined Philadelphia-based Rohm & Haas Co., where he held numerous scientific and managerial positions. In 1985, Mueller became a research director for Johnson & Johnson and served as director for J&J Dental Products and Chicopee Nonwovens.

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