Aug 23, 2019 Nashville, Tenn.

Bridgestone Americas Announces Management, Structure Changes to Fuel Business Growth

Scott Damon and TJ Higgins bridgestone americas
Bridgestone Americas CEO Gordon Knapp

These changes and new structure are strategic, and our ability to develop leaders into global roles across the Bridgestone portfolio is a competitive advantage and allows us to be more agile.

Gordon Knapp, president and CEO, Bridgestone Americas, and vice chair, executive vice president and executive officer of Bridgestone Corporation

Bridgestone Americas, Inc. (Bridgestone) today announced a shift in its senior leadership structure, effective September 16. These changes are in conjunction with and complementary to the global leadership changes recently announced by its parent company, Bridgestone Corporation, and are part of a broader succession platform designed to cultivate global leaders throughout the enterprise.

“The world around us and the industries we serve are rapidly transforming,” said Gordon Knapp, president and CEO, Bridgestone Americas, and vice chair, executive vice president and executive officer of Bridgestone Corporation. “These changes and new structure are strategic, and our ability to develop leaders into global roles across the Bridgestone portfolio is a competitive advantage and allows us to be more agile. Moving forward, we will continue to adapt our management structure to best meet the market challenges of today and prepare for the opportunities of tomorrow.”

In the new structure, sales of all tire-led businesses across the Americas region, including the company’s large integrated consumer and commercial tire businesses, will be aligned under TJ Higgins, who has been named group president, Americas Tire Business for Bridgestone Americas, a new role. Higgins joined the company as president, Consumer Integrated Tire Division, U.S. & Canada, Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO), in 2014. He previously served in senior leadership roles across a number of consumer brands, including divisions of Pfizer and Merck. Higgins earned his bachelor’s degree from Lehigh University and his MBA from Harvard University.

Additionally, Scott Damon has been named group president, operations, for Bridgestone Americas. This new role is designed to create greater focus on the company’s end-to-end supply chain capabilities and includes some of the previous responsibilities of the chief operating officer (COO) role, which has been redefined. Damon will have responsibility for the company’s operational functions, including information technology (IT), procurement and strategic sourcing, logistics and supply chain and manufacturing. Damon previously served as president, commercial group, U.S. & Canada, Bridgestone Americas Tire Operations (BATO). He has held a variety of leadership roles of increasing responsibility throughout his 23-year Bridgestone career. He earned his bachelor’s degree from Carnegie Mellon University and his MBA from Frostburg State University.

The company has also created a new senior leadership role fully dedicated to managing the significant portfolio of digital transformation investments in infrastructure and growth platforms, the largest in the company’s history. Bill Thompson will serve in this capacity as executive vice president, business transformation, Bridgestone Americas. Thompson previously served as COO of Bridgestone Americas from 2016-2019. He has spent more than 23 years with the company in several leadership roles across the company’s diverse portfolio, including chief financial officer. Thompson earned his bachelor’s degree from State University of New York Stony Brook and his master’s degree in finance from Georgia State University.

“The overall shift in structure reflects a holistic design that better aligns to match other regional Bridgestone business units and creates capacity for global talent development,” said Knapp. “We are playing to win. TJ, Scott and Bill each bring unique perspectives, experience and industry expertise to their new roles, and we are excited for the future.”