McConnell to step down as Worthington Industries CEO

Mark Williams
mawilliams@dispatch.com
John P. McConnell will step down as CEO from Worthington Industries.

Longtime Worthington Industries chief executive John P. McConnell will step down from leading the company founded by his father.

The steel manufacturer said June 24 that B. Andrew Rose, the company's president, will become CEO, effective Sept. 1.

McConnell will remain with the company as executive chairman.

"It has been my privilege to lead the company my father founded for over 27 years," McConnell said in a statement. "Andy has been a member of our leadership team for the last 11 years, and I am confident that he will carry our people-first philosophy forward and lead Worthington through its next phase of growth. Together, we have built a dynamic leadership team that will successfully drive us into the future."

As executive chairman, McConnell will work with Rose, the executive team and the board on strategy and initiatives, including acquisitions and joint ventures.

Rose, 50, was named president of Worthington Industries in 2018, a decade after he joined the company.

McConnell, 66, began his career at the company in 1975 as a general laborer, later working in sales and operations with increasing responsibility.

His father, John H. McConnell, founded the company in 1955, using his car as collateral to buy his first load of steel.

Over the past 10 years, Worthington Industries has expanded its business by completing 20 acquisitions.

Today, the company operates 56 facilities in 15 states and six countries, sells into over 90 countries and employs about 7,500 people.

"It is a rare when you see this level of leadership from successive generations both in the community and the company," said Alex Fischer, president and CEO of the Columbus Partnership, a group made up of CEOs.

He said McConnell's role in the partnership shows on every big project in the city over the past several years.

He also praised McConnell for his leadership and handling of the company during the Great Recession that positioned the company to emerge from the downturn with expanded market share and profitability.

"His leadership, ingenuity, the team he brought in to refocus and rebuild the company, that doesn't happen by accident," Fischer said.

mawilliams@dispatch.com

@BizMarkWilliams