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Kurt Danielson announces retirement; Scott Damon named President of Commercial Group


Kurt Danielson, Senior Vice President, Bridgestone Americas, Inc., and President, Commercial Group, U.S. and Canada for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO), has announced his intent to retire December 31, 2017, after more than 23 years with the company.

"Kurt is a well-respected and trusted leader not only within Bridgestone, but across our industry," said Gord Knapp, President and CEO, Bridgestone Americas. "His work within the Commercial Group over the course of his Bridgestone career has contributed to the growth of that business unit and its importance to our portfolio, and his leadership has helped us navigate through both highs and lows in the commercial tire market. Kurt's Bridgestone legacy will be defined by both the success he achieved and how he achieved it – with courage and candor, respect and an unwavering commitment to serve our bosses and our teammates. On behalf of the entire executive leadership team, we wish him the very best in his retirement."

Scott Damon, President, Firestone Industrial Products (FSIP), has been named President, Commercial Group, U.S. and Canada for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO), succeeding Kurt, effective October 1, 2017. Kurt and Scott will work closely together to ensure a smooth transition through the end of the year. Scott will report to Gord. Andrei Apruda, Bridget Neal, Chris Ripani, Jenny Xu, John Vasuta, Joseph Saoud, Laura Maurizi, Ken Dillard and Tony Orlando will all report to Scott. A successor for Scott's role as President, FSIP, will be named in the coming weeks.

"Scott's prior experience within the Commercial Group, coupled with his recent FSIP experience and his leadership style make him a great fit for this role," said Gord. "He brings historical perspective as well as a deep understanding of where the business needs to go and how it fits into our Transformation Journey. He is a strong leader, and I am confident he is the right person to lead this very important piece of our portfolio. Importantly, Scott's promotion to this role also marks an important step in our continued commitment to thoughtful succession planning within Bridgestone Americas."

Kurt joined Bridgestone in 1994 as a Territory Manager. He was promoted to a series of sales positions of increasing responsibility before being named Director of Commercial Tire Marketing for North America in 2003. In 2006, Kurt was named Vice President of Truck and Bus Marketing and in 2011 he was named to his current role as Commercial Group, U.S. and Canada for Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO). Kurt is a member of the Executive Committee of Bridgestone Americas and a member of the TB Global Committee for Bridgestone Corporation.

Scott joined Bridgestone Americas in 1996 as Development Engineer for Bandag in Muscatine, Iowa. In his time with Bandag and Bridgestone Commercial Solutions, he served in various marketing roles with increasing responsibility, including Vice President of Marketing. Scott was named Executive Director of Strategic Planning for Bridgestone Americas Technical Center (ATC) in 2012 and in 2014 was appointed President of Speedco. He was named to his current role as President, FSIP, in 2015.

Scott graduated from Carnegie Mellon University with a bachelor's degree in mechanical engineering. He earned an MBA from Frostburg State University. He currently serves on the boards of FSTVS, the company's joint venture in India, and Beijing Firestone Air Springs, LLC. Scott will also continue to serve as a Strategic Board Observer for ClearMotion.

About Firestone Industrial Products Company, LLC:

Firestone Industrial Products Company, LLC, specializes in air spring manufacturing and technology with a history of more than 75 years of research and development on technologically advanced air springs for the global marketplace. Headquartered in Indianapolis, Ind., Firestone Industrial Products manufactures air springs and related products for commercial trucks and trailers, cars, sport utility vehicles, light trucks, mini vans, motor homes, buses, agricultural equipment, rail and industrial applications. The company has quality-certified manufacturing/assembly plants and technical centers in North America, Latin America, Europe and Asia. For more information, visit

Firestone offers a line of Complete Suspension Solutions that includes Ride-Rite™, Sport-Rite™, Coil-Rite™, and Level-Rite™ Air Helper Springs, and Work-Rite™ Load Assist Springs. These products have become synonymous with quality, durability and outstanding customer support. For more information, visit