News article

01/06/2007

EDANA elects new chairman, vice chairman and board

At the Annual General Meeting of Edana, held in Berlin on 30th May 2007, Gerd Ries, Vice-President EAME, Regulatory and Medical Affairs, Johnson & Johnson, Germany, was elected as Chairman of Edana by members for a one-year term of office, replacing Luc Maes.
At the Annual General Meeting of Edana, held in Berlin on 30th May 2007, Gerd Ries, Vice-President EAME, Regulatory and Medical Affairs, Johnson & Johnson, Germany, was elected as Chairman of Edana by members for a one-year term of office, replacing Luc Maes, who will leave British Vita Nonwovens Division (Libeltex BVBA) later this year.


During his chairmanship, Luc Maes’ leadership, vision and dedication supported the healthy growth of the association’s activities and membership, which has grown, not just in terms of number of companies (over 200), but also in increased geographical scope outside its traditional European domain.  In his speech he referred to the challenges and opportunities for the nonwovens industry, and encouraged companies to make full use of Edana’s strength in acting together proactively with its members on issues affecting the industry.

Mr. Maes referred to one recent successful example of Edana members’ and staff’s coordinated and extensive joint lobbying efforts in the anti-dumping case on imports of staple polyester fibres into Europe from Far East countries.  Thanks to this joint effort the European Commission has accepted our arguments for FREE but FAIR TRADE of these products in order to facilitate the ongoing competitivity of nonwovens producers in Europe versus the rest of the world.  Mr. Maes strongly believes that Edana needs to be close to the European Commission in order to influence decisions which will help our industry prosper.

Mr. Maes, looking back on his chairmanship and involvement with Edana, said, ‘In the almost ten  years that I personally have been involved with Edana and its board, CHANGE and CREATIVITY have been key elements to bring Edana where it is today, as the leading organisation for nonwovens and its related industries.’

‘I am sure that Gerd will be a great chair.  I would like to thank him, the other officers of the Board, the members and the EDANA staff for their support throughout my chairmanship.  I am sure that they will push Edana forward to a bright outlook.”

Gerd Ries, after thanking the members for their confidence in electing him as the new Chair, shared his insight into the internal and external challenges Edana will face over the next 24 months, which broadly fall into three main areas: strategy (which is constantly evolving), challenges from the expansion of Edana (scope, geographically, services) and organisation.

The 5 main tenets of Edana’s strategy are:
  • Free and fair trade
  • Public perception and communication
  • Commoditisation versus innovation
  • Sustainability
  • Influencing the regulatory framework
He commented, ‘A major challenge will be getting the right balance between global growth on one hand and retaining the core, identity and equity of Edana on the other.  We need to ask ourselves what services and events should we offer outside Europe, and to whom, and to then ensure we have an appropriate organisation to enable Edana’s continued success both in Europe and the rest of the world.’’

Pieter Meijer, Vice President Marketing and Sales Europe, Fiberweb France S.A.S., France has been elected by the members as Vice-Chairman.

Gunnar Preifors, Director R&D Personal Care, SCA Hygiene Products AB, Sweden and Paul Eevers, Director Beverages, Supply Management, Unilever Europe Foods, Belgium were both re-elected by the members as Vice-Chairman and Treasurer respectively.

EDANA welcomes three newcomers to the EDANA Board, who have been elected for a three-year term of office:
José Durany, Tesalca-99 S.A., Spain
Michael Hartnett, Mölnlycke Health Care, Sweden
Ghobad Rahrooh, Procter & Gamble, USA
‘EDANA is indebted to its Board members, past and present.’ says Pierre Wiertz, General Manager, Edana. ‘Working closely with the Chair and the Board members ensures that we stay close to the nonwovens industry, and enables us to work effectively on behalf of our members, representing their interests in a changing environment.  I would like to thank Luc most sincerely for his leadership and commitment of the past year as Chairman and countless others as an active Board member.  I would like to congratulate Gerd on his new role as Chairman of Edana, and to assure him that he has, not only the full support of the Edana membership in his forthcoming challenge, but also the full support of the Edana staff’.’

The complete list of EDANA Officers and Governors for 2007-2008 follows.

CHAIRMAN
  • Gerd Ries, Vice-President EAME, Regulatory and External Relations, Scientific and Medical Affairs, Johnson & Johnson, Germany
VICE-CHAIRMEN
  • Pieter Meijer, Vice President Marketing and Sales Europe, Fiberweb France S.A.S., France
  • Gunnar Preifors, Director R&D Personal Care, SCA Hygiene Products AB, Sweden
TREASURER
  • Paul Eevers, Director Beverages, Supply Management, Unilever Europe Foods, Belgium
OTHER MEMBERS OF THE BOARD
  • José Durany, General Manager, Tesalca-99, S.A., Spain
  • Claudio Ermondi, Senior Vice President Nonwovens, Ahlstrom Turin SpA, Italy)
  • Michael Hartnett, Marketing Director Surgical Divison, Mölnlycke Health Care, Sweden
  • Geoffrey Katz, Regional Business Director – DuPont™ Nonwovens Sontara® for the  Europe, Middle East & Africa Region, Du Pont de Nemours Int’l S.A., Switzerland
  • František Klaška, Technical Director, PEGAS a.s., Czech Republic
  • Stefano Lupi, General Manager Personal Care Business Unit, Tredegar Film Products BV, The Netherlands
  • Alexander Maksimow, President and CEO, McAirlaid’s Vliesstoffe GmbH, Germany
  • Krzysztof Malowaniec, Vice President Development & Corporate Communications, Paul Hartmann AG, Germany
  • Ghobad Rahrooh, Director of Material Science & Technology, Procter & Gamble, Corporate Research and Product Development, USA
  • Bernd Reck, Head of Marketing Fiberbonding, BASF AG, Germany
  • Josef Schmidtbauer, Director Global Fibers Technology, Lenzing AG, Austria
  • Michael Staton, Chief Executive, Nice-Pak International, U.K.
  • Kenneth A. Strassner, Vice President – Environment, Energy, Safety, Quality and Consumer Services, Kimberly-Clark Corporation, USA
  • Arnold Weghmann, Managing Director, Freudenberg Vliesstoffe Service KG, Freudenberg Nonwovens Group, Germany

For further information, please contact:
Catherine Lennon, Communications Director, EDANA
Telephone: +32 2 734 93 10 / Fax: +32 2 733 35 18
E-mail: Catherine.lennon@edana.org
Website: www.edana.org
Photos
The photos of Gerd Ries and Luc Maes are available in high resolution – please contact Véronique Verboekhoven if you wish to receive a copy.
Tel: +32 2 740 18 10
Fax: +32 2 733 35 18
Email: veronique.verboekhoven@edana.org
EDANA | Avenue Herrmann Debroux 46-B-1160 Brussels, Belgium | Tel: +32 2 734 93 10