People making headlines

Finishes Unlimited, which has recently been acquired by an employee group, has made the following appointments. Ken Burton, formerly the company's vice president, Marketing, was named president of the company and will head day-to-day operations. Also named officers are John Schwartz, vice president, Manufacturing; Peter Smelyansky, vice president, Technology; and Jill Olson, secretary. Hank Goldshalk will remain with the company as chairman and consultant.

Michelman, Inc., has hired Martin A. Cohen, Ph.D., as the new global director of Commercial Technology. Cohen comes to Michelman with nearly 30 years of coatings research experience from his former positions at E.I. DuPont de Nemours and Company, Kimberly-Clark Corp., Lydall, Inc. and, most recently, Noveon, Inc. He will be responsible for directing the research activities of the company's Performance Additives and Performance Coatings businesses, including managing the commercial research laboratories at Michelman's facilities in Cincinnati, Ohio; Aubange, Belgium; and Shanghai, China.

John McLaren has joined Akzo Nobel as director of corporate communications. McLaren was most recently with DSM, where he directed communication of the company's Vision 2005 strategy. During his tenure, DSM's corporate communications department was named Communicatie magazine's best media-relations department and received the Henri Sijthoff Prize for the best annual report in the Netherlands.

Charles Ross and Son Co. announced a realignment of the company's Midwestern sales territory, naming Michael Morse, Midwestern regional sales manager, to an expanded sales territory that includes Michigan, Illinois, Wisconsin, Minnesota, Iowa and Northern Indiana. Morse joined the company nearly 30 years ago and has experience in handling the company's entire product line. Bill Alhofen has assumed responsibility for sales in Missouri and Kansas. Alhofen has held several positions with the company over the last 20 years.

Cognis has appointed Otilia Par and Raif Neumann as technical European sales managers for Key Accounts, Consumer Coatings, with responsibility for technical sales service to key European and global consumer-coatings customers with particular emphasis on defoamers, thickeners and dispersants. Par and Neumann have held technical sales positions with Cognis for several years. Par is based in Barcelona, and Neumann is based at Cognis' Düsseldorf office.

Charles "Chuck" Rohn has joined Malvern Instruments' rheology products business in the United States as applications consultant. Rohn has held senior positions at Bohlin Instruments and Rheometrics, and has headed the international consulting firm Rohn and Associates. He is the author of research papers in the fields of rheology, dynamic mechanical analysis and thermal analysis, and is the author of the book Analytical Polymer Rheology.

Uniqema named Chris Siemer regional director for the Asia Pacific region, with responsibility for daily operations and regional strategies. He succeeds Antoine Fady, who was named chief executive of ICI's Packaging Coatings business. Siemer has held a series of positions with several ICI businesses and most recently was vice president of Uniqema's Synthetics business in the Americas.

Wayne T. Smith has joined BASF as group vice president, Intermediates, in North America. Smith has more than 20 years of industry experience, most recently as vice president and general manager of Specialty Construction Chemicals at W.R. Grace and Co. BASF's Intermediates business manufactures more than 600 products, including amines, diols, polyalcohols and acids used in paint and coatings and other industrial markets.

SPX Process Equipment has named John Sneeringer to a technical sales position for Premier Mill, with responsibility for technical sales support, process training and equipment operation for Premier Mill's network of sales agents and customers. Sneeringer also will act as an account specialist for Premier Mill's institutional customers. Sneeringer has previously held the positions of technical director, laboratory manager and Midwest Region sales manager with Premier Mill.

The Valspar Corp. announced that Deborah D. Weiss, vice president and treasurer, will leave the company, effective Dec. 31. Lori A. Walker, vice president and controller, assumed the position of treasurer, effective Nov. 1.