Avery Dennison Corporation (NYSE:AVY) today announced the death of Philip M. Neal, the Company’s retired chairman and chief executive officer. He was 68 years old and died on October 29, 2008 of heart failure.
“Phil Neal’s death is a blow to all who knew him,” said Dean A. Scarborough, president and chief executive officer of Avery Dennison. “This company has lost one of its best leaders. He will long be remembered for his dedication to Avery Dennison and his focus on developing leaders in every area of our business around the world.”
Throughout his 32-year Avery Dennison career, Neal played a key role in implementing the core financial and operating strategies that have supported the growth and direction of the Company. He was an instrumental force in driving the Company’s strategic focus on increasing economic value and in targeting key management priorities that include customer service, quality, safety, manufacturing effectiveness, financial management systems and asset management.
Neal implemented initiatives that resulted in industry recognition for Avery Dennison’s consistent performance in operating one of the safest workplace environments in a manufacturing company. He was also the architect of substantial improvements in productivity as a result of the installation of time-based management systems. Neal instituted key service-based measures for managing operations throughout the Company that ensured Avery Dennison’s industry leadership position.
Neal joined Avery Dennison in 1974 as controller and was named a vice president a year later. In 1979, he was promoted to senior vice president, finance, and chief financial officer. He was named group vice president, Materials North America, in 1988, and was elected executive vice president in March 1990. In November 1990, he was elected president and chief operating officer. He was appointed chief executive officer in May 1998, and in May 2000 he became chairman and chief executive officer. As planned, Neal retired from the positions of chief executive officer and chairman in 2005.
Prior to joining Avery Dennison, Neal was associated with McKinsey & Co., Los Angeles. Earlier he held positions in financial planning and analysis with Columbia Broadcasting Systems. He graduated from Pomona College in 1962 with a degree in economics and received an MBA from Stanford University in 1964.
Neal served as a member of the Board of Trustees of Pomona College, the Board of Directors of the Independent Colleges of Southern California, Pacific Basin Institute, Edwards Lifesciences Corporation, Los Angeles Area Chamber of Commerce and Los Angeles World Affairs Council. He was also a member of the California Business Roundtable and the Board of Governors of Town Hall of California. In 1994, he served as chairman of the Heart Ball for the Los Angeles Chapter of the American Heart Association.
Born in San Diego on August 28, 1940, he is survived by his wife, Beverly, and two children, Brian and Kevin Neal.
Avery Dennison is a global leader in pressure-sensitive labeling materials, retail tag, ticketing and branding systems, and office products. Based in Pasadena, Calif., Avery Dennison is a FORTUNE 500 Company with 2007 sales of $6.3 billion. Avery Dennison employs more than 30,000 individuals in over 60 countries, who develop, manufacture and market a wide range of products for both consumer and industrial markets. Products offered by Avery Dennison include: Fasson-brand self-adhesive materials; Avery Dennison brand products for the retail and apparel industries; Avery-brand office products and graphics imaging media; specialty tapes, peel-and-stick postage stamps, and labels for a wide variety of automotive, industrial and durable goods applications.
Diane B. Dixon, 626-304-2118
Eric M. Leeds, 626-304-2029
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