Information and biographies regarding the Executive Officers of Steelcase Inc.
Guillaume M. AlvarezSenior Vice President, EMEA
Guillaume Alvarez is senior vice president, EMEA for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry. Appointed to this role in November 2011, Guillaume is responsible for Steelcase’s sales activities in Europe, the Middle East and Africa.
Previously, Guillaume was vice president of global client collaboration (2009-11), where he managed the company's refreshed approach to delivering unique value to our customers through a consistent structure and process. Prior to that, he was vice president of global alliances (2008-09), which include overseeing Steelcase’s largest strategic global accounts, roughly $500 million a year in annual sales, and having responsibility for the sales teams for Vertical Markets, Applied Research and Architecture and Technology.
Guillaume was also vice president of sales for the Central Region of Steelcase North America (appointed March 2006), overseeing all sales activity in his region, one of four in the United States.
Other roles he has held at Steelcase include president, Latin America, Asia Pacific and Middle East (appointed June 2000), where he was the head of all sales, marketing and dealer development efforts in those regions; director, international marketing; general manager, Middle East, Africa and India (1996-99); and vice president, United Kingdom, Eire, Benelux and Latin America, for Steelcase International (appointed September 2000), responsible for all aspects of sales and marketing in these countries, as well as dealer development for all markets outside of North America.
Born in Rawalpindi, Pakistan in 1959, Guillaume earned a diplome universitaire de technologie in marketing from the University of Paris in Paris, France in 1981 and received his diplome d'etudes universitaire general in sociology a year later from the same institution. He also served in the French Army as an assistant advisory officer stationed in Freiburg, Germany.
Sara E. ArmbrusterVice President, Strategy, Research and New Business Innovation
Sara Armbruster is vice president, strategy, research and new business innovation for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Appointed to this position in January 2014, Sara expands on her previous role of vice president of WorkSpace Futures and Corporate Strategy, which she assumed in March 2009. Sara works closely with Steelcase's businesses on major initiatives and oversees the strategy development process. In addition, she leads all corporate business development activity. Sara manages Steelcase’s design research, which focuses on understanding users, changing work patterns, and the impact of emerging technologies in the workplace – all critical inputs to Steelcase innovations. Sara leads Steelcase’s new business innovation activities, which include ideation of new business concepts, investment in internal and external growth opportunities, creation and development of new business models to serve markets such as healthcare and education, and oversight of our subsidiary, PolyVision.
Before joining Steelcase, Sara was vice president of business development at Banta Corporation, a contract printing company based in Menasha, Wisconsin (March 2003-March 2007). In that role, she led strategy development for the corporation and managed all merger and acquisition activity. She also served as interim chief marketing officer during a portion of her tenure at Banta.
Prior to that, she worked for McKinsey & Company in Boston, Massachusetts (September 1999-February 2003), helping clients with a variety of strategy and general management issues; and for Andersen Consulting as a business and research analyst in the firm’s consumer products practice (August 1994-August 1997).
Sara holds a bachelor's degree in Slavic languages and literature from Yale University in New Haven, Connecticut; a master's in international relations from the Paul H. Nitze School of Advanced International Studies of Johns Hopkins University in Washington, D.C.; and an MBA from the Amos Tuck School at Dartmouth College in Hanover, New Hampshire.
Ulrich H.E. GwinnerPresident, Asia Pacific
Uli Gwinner is president, Asia Pacific for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
In this role, Uli oversees all operations in the Asia Pacific region, including Japan, Australia, Hong Kong and Singapore as well as emerging markets in India and Greater China.
Previously, Uli served as president of Steelcase REMEA in charge of business operations in Eastern and Central Europe, the Middle East, Africa and Italy. Uli is also a member of Steelcase's executive team, managing all Asian and European businesses since 2000.
Uli led Steelcase Werndl AG from 2000 to 2007, and was responsible for leading the post-merger integration between Werndl AG and Steelcase Inc., as well as managing the development of its export markets.
Before joining Steelcase in 2000, Uli was senior project manager and consultant at Roland Berger Strategy Consultants in Munich, Germany. He also served in the German Army Service as a mountain ranger and is a certified ski instructor. He participates in swimming, cycling and waterskiing on a competitive level.
Born in Munich, Germany, Uli graduated from Munich's Ludwigs-Maximilians-Universität with a bachelor's in economics and a master's degree in economics from Universität Augsburg.
James P. KeanePresident and Chief Executive Officer, Director
James P. Keane is president and chief executive officer, director for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry. Appointed to this role in March 2014, Jim oversees all operations of Steelcase Inc., including domestic and international operations.
Previously Jim was chief operating officer for Steelcase, a role he was appointed to in November 2012, where he was responsible for the design, engineering and development, manufacturing, sales and distribution of all of our brands in the countries where we do business. He also retained the leadership duties of his previous role as president of Steelcase Group (2006-12), in which he had responsibility for the sales, marketing and product development activities of the Steelcase, Turnstone, Polyvision, Nurture and Details brands in the Americas (the U.S., Canada, Mexico and Latin America) and EMEA (Europe, the Middle East and Africa). Jim was appointed president and director in April 2013.
Jim was senior vice president, chief financial officer of Steelcase Inc. from 2001-2006. Previously, Jim has also led corporate strategy, IT, Steelcase Design Partnership, and research and development since joining the company in 1997.
He serves on the boards of Rockwell Automation, IDEO, Business and Institutional Furniture Manufacturer’s Association (BIFMA), Frederik Meijer Gardens & Sculpture Park Foundation, the board of trustees of Grand Valley University Foundation and the executive board of Design Futures Council.
Jim earned a bachelor of science degree in accountancy from the University of Illinois and a master's in management degree from the Kellogg Graduate School of Management at Northwestern University.
Hamid KhorramianSenior Vice President, Global Operations
Hamid Khorramian is senior vice president, global operations for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry. Appointed to this role in April 2012, Hamid is responsible for the supply chain, which includes order fulfillment, procurement, manufacturing, transportation, and distribution at all locations around the globe.
Previously, Hamid was vice president, North America Operations, with responsibility for manufacturing at all Steelcase North America plants, including manufacturing services (skilled trades, facilities maintenance and operations engineering). He also oversaw key customer and dealer touchpoints, including solutions fulfillment, specials engineering, physical distribution and corporate quality. Prior to that, he was vice president, North America manufacturing.
Hamid joined Steelcase in 1994 when the company acquired Anderson Desk, where he was chief operating officer. He became general manager of that facility for Steelcase, and in 2000, he also became general manager of our former City of Industry plant.
In 2002, he added responsibility for Steelcase manufacturing plants in Athens, Alabama and Atlanta, Georgia. In this capacity, he was responsible for overseeing all operations at those facilities and working with each plant's manager.
A native of southern California, Hamid earned a bachelor's degree in Industrial Engineering from California State Polytechnic University, Pomona, California.
James N. LudwigVice President, Global Design and Product Engineering
James Ludwig is vice president, global design and product engineering for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
James was named to this role in March 2008 with global responsibility for the product design direction of Steelcase, Turnstone, Nurture and Details, overseeing teams in Europe, Asia and the United States. Additionally, he is responsible for the design direction of all Steelcase showrooms and WorkLife Centers. In November 2013, James added global project management to his responsibilities. This is an expansion of his previous role as director of design for Steelcase North America.
After being named director of design in August 2000, James took over leadership of the advanced engineering group, the project management group of Steelcase-brand products, and support of the Steelcase International design team in October 2002.
An architect and industrial designer, James joined Steelcase in July 1999 as director of integrated architectural products design. He was responsible for developing a variety of Steelcase architectural products, including the most recent iteration of Pathways®.
Prior to joining Steelcase, James was a founding partner of bold:architects.designers., an interdisciplinary design consultancy in Berlin, Germany (1995-1999). In this role, he promoted teams of architects and designers – both product and graphic – to realize diverse projects such as furniture and office products, graphic programs for a variety of international clients and new buildings and renovations in the reconstruction of a reunited Berlin.
Before starting his own company, James worked in the architectural offices of Grüntüch/Ernst and Buseck Architects from 1993 to 1994, designing projects ranging in scale from single-family residences to industrial complexes.
From 1993 to 1998, James also taught in the Architecture and Industrial Design departments at the Hochschule der Künste-Berlin (now Berlin University of the Arts).
Prior to leaving for Berlin, James worked in Chicago with the design consultancy Design-Logic and independently in New York for clients such as Details, Dictaphone, Hayes Microcomputer, RC Computer of Denmark and Viewmaster-Ideal, designing high-tech products and conducting advanced research.
James earned a bachelor of fine arts in industrial design from the University of Illinois in Champaign-Urbana and a bachelor of architecture from The Cooper Union in New York City. In 1992, he was the recipient of a Fulbright Grant, which allowed him to move to Berlin to continue the research he had begun in New York.
Gale MoutreyVice President, Communications
Gale Moutrey is vice president, communications for Steelcase Inc, the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Named to this role in January 2014, Gale leads the global teams responsible for all internal and external communications, including brand and product communications, employee communications, shareholder and investor communications, public relations, research communications, conferences, tradeshows, events, channel communications, digital marketing and showrooms.
Previously, Gale was vice president of brand communications, a role she assumed in 2011.
Gale has held a variety of sales leadership, product marketing and communications roles since joining Steelcase Canada in 1984.
She holds a bachelor degree in English from the University of Toronto, Canada and a marketing degree form Ryerson University in Toronto.
Lizbeth S. O'ShaughnessySenior Vice President, Chief Adminstrative Officer, General Counsel and Secretary
Beth O'Shaughnessy is senior vice president, chief administrative officer, general counsel and secretary for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Beth took on the additional duties of chief administrative officer in July 2014, expanding her role as vice president, chief legal officer and secretary (2007-14). In addition to her leadership of legal services, Beth is now responsible for several other groups, including global talent management, sustainability, community relations, global trade compliance and environmental performance; and corporate governance as the secretary of the board of directors.
Previously, Beth was vice president, chief legal officer and secretary (2007-11) with global leadership responsibility for all legal services and consultation advice necessary to support the company's global business and to provide research, review and active involvement in legal matters for various groups within the company.
Prior to that, Beth was assistant general counsel and assistant corporate secretary. Appointed assistant general counsel in 2000, she was responsible for providing legal services and consultation advice necessary to support the company's global business, and to research, review and be actively involved in various legal issues, including global antitrust/competition law and distribution matters, and all legal matters for parts of Europe, the Middle East and all of Latin America and Central America. She also had responsibility for corporate governance as the assistant secretary of the nominating and corporate governance committee of the board of directors during 2005 and 2006.
Beth joined Steelcase in 1992 as corporate counsel and was promoted to senior corporate counsel in 1995 and then to assistant general counsel in 2000. She also spent two years as an expatriate in the Netherlands for Steelcase (August 2001–August 2003), during which time she was focused entirely on providing legal services to Steelcase International.
Prior to joining Steelcase, Beth was employed from 1987 to 1992 at The Dow Chemical Company as an antitrust attorney.
Beth earned her juris doctor degree from Indiana University at Bloomington in 1987. She earned a bachelor of arts degree in economics from Michigan State University in 1984.
Beth is a member of the State Bar of Michigan and the American Bar Association.
Eddy F. SchmittSenior Vice President, Americas
Eddy Schmitt is senior vice president, Americas for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Appointed to this role in February 2011, Eddy is responsible for sales and channel activities in North America and Latin America. Eddy is also responsible for our global client collaboration teams and applied research and consulting teams in EMEA and APAC.
Previously, Eddy was vice president, France for Steelcase (2006-2011), where he was responsible for all sales and channel activities in France.
Eddy joined Steelcase in March 2003 as vice president of international marketing and R&D. In this role, Eddy was responsible for all product design, development and marketing activities in EMEA, APAC and Latin America, as well as Steelcase’s sustainable development strategies and internal and external communications in these regions.
Prior to joining Steelcase, Eddy worked for The Boston Consulting Group between 1993 and 2003 in Paris and New York.
Eddy is a graduate of the Ecole des Hautes Etudes Commerciales (HEC) in Paris, France. He also studied business at the University of Chicago’s Graduate School of Business and the University of Economics in Vienna, Austria.
Allan W. Smith Jr.Vice President, Global Marketing
Allan Smith is vice president, global marketing for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Previously, Allan was vice president of applications and product marketing (2011-2013) for Steelcase Group. He was also general manager, furniture and technology for Steelcase North America (2009-2011), responsible for all marketing, product development and the overall profitability of the furniture and technology business categories.
Prior to that Allan served as vice president, marketing, research and product development for Steelcase in Europe (2006-09). Before that, he headed up the company’s global environmental strategy and programs (2004-08). He also served as director of marketing and communications, responsible for all knowledge and service marketing, advanced marketing and the first phase of product development (2002-06). In this capacity, he contributed to the launch of the Steelcase Think™ chair, a product conceived, developed and produced for maximum sustainability. He also led the development and implementation of a new program that defined protocols and standards to ensure environmentally preferable printing practices for all Steelcase collateral.
Previously, Allan was director of global corporate marketing and communications, where his responsibilities included advertising, public relations and Steelcase's proprietary workplace effectiveness initiatives and programs for customers.
From March 1999 to June 2001, Allan was director of communications, with responsibility for developing strategy for Steelcase's corporate and marketing communications across all functional areas, including corporate advertising, public relations and investor communications.
Allan was previously director of marketing, communications and new business development at Designtex, a Steelcase Design Partnership (SDP) company. He joined Designtex in 1991 and oversaw advertising, public relations, employee communications, product marketing, special events, trade shows, showrooms and identity work. His achievements in this role included being part of the team that in 1993 launched the William McDonough Collection, the world's first compostable, organic fabric collection.
David C. SylvesterSenior Vice President, Chief Financial Officer
Dave Sylvester is senior vice president, chief financial officer for Steelcase Inc., the global leader in the office furniture industry.
Named to this role in April 2011, Dave expanded on his previous role as vice president, chief financial officer (2006-2011) and also took responsibility for global facilities and real estate and Steelcase aviation. In November 2013, Dave also added information technology to his reporting structure. In March 2014, our global business centers were added to his responsibilities.
Previously, Dave was vice president, operations finance (March 2005-October 2006), responsible for operations finance in North America and internationally. He also worked closely with the supply chain organization on product and process placement decisions and on implementing supply chain strategy around the world.
Dave began his Steelcase career in 1995 as manager, financial reporting and planning. In 1998 he became director and assistant controller, corporate finance, for Steelcase Inc., primarily responsible for all internal and external financial reporting and analysis. During this time, Dave helped Steelcase Inc. with the transition to becoming a publicly traded company in 1998.
Dave then served as finance leader for Steelcase International (2001-2005), responsible for all finance related activities outside of the United States and Canada, including profitability analyses, EVA measurement, accounting and reporting, acquisition integration, as well as a variety of special projects.
Before joining Steelcase, Dave held several audit positions with PriceWaterhouseCoopers in Chicago, Illinois. He graduated from Michigan State University in East Lansing, Michigan, in 1987 with a bachelor’s degree in accounting and a master’s of business administration in finance.