Menasha Corporation today announced that James M. Kotek will retire from his position as President and Chief Executive Officer in March. The Menasha Corporation Board of Directors has appointed Christopher D. Drees to succeed Kotek effective March 13, 2023. Drees will also join the Menasha Corporation Board on that date.
“On behalf of the Board of Directors, the executive leadership team, and Menasha Corporation’s 7,500 employees, I want to thank Jim for his 32 years of dedicated service to our company, 14 of those years as President and CEO,” said Donald C. Shepard, III, Chairman of the Board, Menasha Corporation. “Jim led Menasha Corporation through a period of unprecedented growth while maintaining a singular focus on a guiding principle—people first. The Board and our shareholders are sincerely grateful to Jim for his dedication to Menasha Corporation and wish him all the best in his retirement.”
“It has been an extraordinary honor to serve as Chief Executive Officer of Menasha Corporation,” said Kotek. “To have had the opportunity to lead such a unique and historic business has been humbling. I’m proud of the success we achieved and of every employee who contributed to making that success possible. Finally, I’m confident that Chris Drees is the right leader to build on that foundation and drive the Company to even higher levels of success in the future.”
Drees joins Menasha Corporation following a successful 24-year career at Brunswick Corporation, during which he progressed through successively more responsible operational and general management roles culminating in his 2019 appointment as President of Mercury Marine, Brunswick’s largest division.
“The Board is excited about the future of the Company under Chris’ leadership. As we have gotten to know Chris better, it became clear that his strategic vision, deep manufacturing and operations experience, and impressive leadership skillset make him a tremendous fit for Menasha Corporation’s CEO role,” said Shepard.
“I want to thank Jim Kotek for his distinguished leadership at Menasha Corporation and the Board for its confidence in me as I step into this role,” said Drees “I am honored and excited to lead a
company with such a long history of success and one that also gives so much back to the communities in which it operates.”
About Menasha Corporation
Menasha Corporation is a leading corrugated and plastic packaging manufacturer and supply chain solutions provider specializing in retail merchandising packaging and displays, plastic reusable containers and pallets, protective packaging interiors, and packaging supply chain and fulfillment services. Comprised of two companies—Menasha Packaging Company and ORBIS Corporation—Menasha Corporation’s products and services are used by major food, beverage, consumer products, industrial/automotive, health and beauty, over-the-counter pharmaceutical, and electronics companies. Established in 1849, Menasha Corporation is one of America’s oldest privately held, family-owned manufacturing companies. Headquartered in Neenah, Wisconsin, the company employs more than 7,500 employees in 105 facilities in North America and Europe.