A. O. Smith names new vice president-engineering
By HPAC MagazineManagement Plumbing
The North American Water Heating business unit of A. O. Smith Corporation has named Gregory A. Reynolds as vice president-engineering. In his new role, Reynolds will be responsible for leading the residential and commercial water heater product engineering function for North America. Reynolds succeeds Darrell Schuh who was promoted recently to the vice president and general manager of Water Systems and APCOM.
“Greg brings 25 years of experience in both commercial and residential design engineering to his new role,” commented David Warren, president and general manager of North American Water Heating. “He has in-depth knowledge of our products, operations, and processes and is well known to many of our customers.”
Reynolds joined the company as an engineering co-op student in 1992. After graduating in 1995 with a bachelor’s degree in Mechanical Engineering from the University of South Carolina in Columbia, he was hired full time by A. O. Smith as a product engineer for the residential product engineering group and was promoted to project engineer in 2001. Two years later, he transferred to the commercial engineering group as a project engineer.
While working at A. O. Smith, Reynolds earned an MBA degree from the University of South Carolina. He is a member of the American Society of Gas Engineers and has earned four patents during his career with the company.
In other A.O. Smith news, work has started on a new 42,700 sq. ft. corporate technology centre on Milwaukee’s northwest side.
The new A.O. Smith research centre will include water heater and boiler performance test labs, water treatment labs, an air test lab, as well as a number of specialized development labs. It will support advanced research and development in the areas of potable and hydronic water heating, water treatment, and air purification. The company expects to complete construction during the fourth quarter of 2018.
“Whenever we talk about the fundamentals for A. O. Smith’s success, innovation is always a major part of the discussion,” chairman and chief executive officer Ajita G. Rajendra pointed out at the event. “One of the reasons for this company’s success for more than 143 years is our ability to identify changing customer needs and develop new products and new services to meet those needs.”
“We have invested a great deal in our global engineering organization over the last several years,” Rajendra said. “This new facility is just the latest in that series of investments. It will give the world-class talent who make up our Corporate Technology team a world class development center in which to do their work.”
“We wanted to keep the new facility right here in Milwaukee,” president and chief operating officer Kevin J. Wheeler observed. “Having it adjacent to our world headquarters with the ability to bring our guests from around the world to both facilities, in close proximity to each other, is a great advantage.”
Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett thanked the company for its commitment to the city. “What I love about A. O. Smith is that it resembles Milwaukee,” Barrett told the attendees. “A. O. Smith is thriving today because of its ability to reinvent itself. It’s a world-wide company noted for the innovations it makes to stay relevant.”
“This is a great day for the district that I represent,” Milwaukee Alderman Jim Bohl said. “As we reinvent Milwaukee as a global water hub, who better to lead us in this transition than A. O. Smith?” Bohl pointed out that his great grandfather once worked at the company.
Rajendra also announced the name of the new facility will be the Lloyd R. Smith Corporate Technology Center. Smith was a member of the third generation of the founding family and led the company from 1913 until 1944. During that time, the company made a number of technology breakthroughs, entered several new industries, and built a world-renowned engineering organization of more than 500 people.