PITTSBURGH — Covestro LLC has appointed veteran entrepreneur Currie Crookston to the newly created position of Head of Innovation Management. Crookston will be responsible for driving global innovation strategy in North America, primarily by assisting the company’s three business units in creating new opportunities beyond their core R&D efforts.

Crookston brings a diverse background to Covestro. He spent the first eight years of his career as a Lieutenant Commander in the U.S. Navy SEALs and then worked as an associate at A.T. Kearney. Crookston then went on to launch four businesses — including PetsDx, Allegheny Development Partners and Riverfront 47 — and develop several patents.

“Currie’s unique background not only demonstrates a strong passion for innovation, but a personal drive for success — a combination that will serve him well in this role,” said Jerry MacCleary, President of Covestro LLC. “As Covestro strengthens its focus on cultivating innovation and building an entrepreneurial culture, I’m confident we have the right person leading this effort in North America.”

Crookston’s appointment builds on a series of activities that further demonstrate the company’s commitment to invest in innovation. Recently, Covestro launched a global initiative, called the Start-up Challenge, which Crookston helped to champion in North America. This internal competition encourages Covestro employees to submit innovative ideas and collaborate with others to fully develop their projects. One winning team will receive funding to take its idea from concept to reality.