Four Bridgestone execs will take on greater roles

Feb. 21, 2011

Koki Takahashi, vice chairman and chief financial officer of Bridgestone Americas Inc., will take over as chairman on March 18, 2011. His successor as Bridgestone Americas' CFO will be announced at a later date.

The CFO of Bridgestone Americas since August 2010, Takahashi has more than 30 years of experience with the Bridgestone Group of companies, and has held various senior level finance positions with Bridgestone Corp., including CFO from 2008 through June 2010.

Prior to his latest assignment with Bridtgestone Americas, he served as vice president, officer and assistant to the vice president and senior officer responsible for corporate administration at Bridgestone Corp.

Takahashi will be taking on the board leadership position that has been held by Masaaki Tsuya on an interim basis since Jan. 1, 2011. Tsuya is a board member, vice president, senior officer, chief risk management officer, chief human rights officer and officer responsible for corporate administration for Bridgestone Corp.

“We were very privileged to have Tsuya-san serve in this very important role," says Gary Garfield, CEO and president of Bridgestone Americas.

"I want to personally thank him for the leadership he provided our board on an interim basis. Fortunately, Tsuya-san remains a member of the (Bridgestone Americas) board, so our organization will continue to benefit from his business knowledge and strategic vision.”

The board also elected three Bridgestone Americas executives to key positions with the parent company.

Garfield and Eduardo Minardi, chief operating officer of Bridgestone Americas and chairman, CEO and president of Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations LLC (BATO), vice presidents and senior officers of Bridgestone Corp., effective March 29, 2011.

* Garfield assumed the role of CEO and president of Bridgestone Americas on March 1, 2010, after three years as vice president and general counsel. In 1991, he joined the former Bridgestone/Firestone Inc. as senior counsel.

* Minardi assumed the role of chief operating officer for Bridgestone Americas and chairman, CEO and president of BATO on March 1, 2010. He joined Bridgestone Firestone Argentina S.A.I.C. in 1989 as product manager.

Christine Karbowiak, chief administrative officer and executive vice president of Bridgestone Americas, was elected a vice president and officer of Bridgestone Corp., effective March 29, 2011.

She assumed responsibility for Bridgestone Americas' community and corporate relations, government relations, environmental affairs, internal audit, safety and industrial hygiene, and corporate security functions on April 1, 2010, when she was named to the newly created position of chief administrative officer. Karbowiak joined the company’s retail operations in Rolling Meadows, Ill., as senior counsel in June 1992.