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Bridgestone/Firestone shuffles top manufacturing positions

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Nubuo "Tim" Kawakami, president of Bridgestone/Firestone Manufacturing Operations (BFMO), will retire on March 31, 2003; he will be replaced by Masao Wada, who is currently plant manager at Bridgestone/Firestone's Aiken, S.C., production facility.

Wada will assume the title of Bridgestone/Firestone North American Tire LLC executive vice president of manufacturing on Feb. 1, 2003.

Mike Rose, Aiken's operations manager, will succeed Wada when Wada moves up.

Also effective Feb. 1, John McQuade, BFMO vice president of manufacturing, will join Bridgestone/Firestone's labor negotiations team full-time.

Negotiations with the United Steelworkers of America are expected to start this coming spring.

Succeeding McQuade will be Steve Brooks, presently BFMO vice president of quality assurance.

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