Yokohama makes North American leadership changes
Jeff Barna, president of Yokohama Tire Corporation (YTC), has been promoted to president and CEO of YTC. Shinichi Takimoto, a senior managing officer of The Yokohama Rubber Co. Ltd. (YRC), and current CEO of YTC, will retain his role as chairman of YTC, as well as president and CEO of Yokohama Corporation of North America (YCNA), chairman of Yokohama Tire Canada Inc. (YTV), and chairman of Yokohama Tire Mexico S. de R.L. de C.V. (YTMX).
Barna, a managing officer of YRC, joined YTC as COO in 2017 and was named president of YTC in 2018. This latest move gives Barna greater oversight of YTC’s US-based operations, including the Yokohama Development Center America (YDCA) in Cornelius, North Carolina.
“I’m honoured and grateful for the opportunity to continue to lead Yokohama in the US,” said Barna. “Our parent company has recognized us as a driver of global growth for our consolidated operations and that is exactly what we intend to do. I’m very much looking forward to officially increasing my involvement with the product and innovation agenda of YDCA and confident that the team we have assembled throughout the country has us in a great position to reach our goals.”
At the same time, Takehisa Morimoto has been named as the new chairman and president of Yokohama Tire Manufacturing Mississippi (YTMM). Morimoto, who formerly held a role at Yokohama’s consumer tyre plant in Salem, Virginia and is currently president of Yokohama Tire Manufacturing Thailand (YTMT), replaces Hikomitsu Noji, who will return to YRC as a senior advisor.
In addition, Tom Kenny, currently senior director of research and development at YDCA, has been promoted to vice president of YDCA. Kenny will now report directly to Jeff Barna.
Meanwhile, Jeremy Kahrs has been promoted to senior director of technical services at YDCA, from director of technical services. Kahrs will continue to report to Tom Kenny.
“I’d like to personally welcome Mr. Morimoto back to the US I know he’ll be a great fit and is ready to lead YTMM,” Barna said. “I’d also like to congratulate Tom and Jeremy on their well-deserved promotions at YDCA. I’ve had the pleasure of working with both of them the last few years and am excited about their ongoing leadership of YDCA.” Several organizational changes were announced by Yokohama Tire Corporation (YTC). All the personnel changes are effective 30 March 2021.