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Gerard to Take Reins at American Chemistry Council

Jack Gerard is leaving his post as CEO of the National Mining Association to lead the American Chemistry Council beginning July 1.

At the Arlington-based group, which is the leading voice of the chemistry industry, Gerard will succeed interim president and CEO Tom Reilly. Reilly had filled in after Gregory Lebedev stepped down in 2004 following only a year on the job.

“Jack’s experience on Capitol Hill, coupled with his high energy and business sense, will be critical to achieving our advocacy goals,” said Mike Campbell, chairman of the Chemistry Council’s board of directors and the leader of the search that chose Gerard. “We have a lot of issues on our plate: the security of our industry, runaway energy prices, attacks on many of our products, to name a few.”

Before taking the helm at the National Mining Association, Gerard ran a lobbying practice at McClure, Gerard & Neuenschwander, where his clients included NMA. On Capitol Hill, Gerard worked as legislative director for then-Sen. James McClure (R-Idaho) and was a legislative assistant to then-Rep. George Hansen (R-Idaho).

Under Gerard’s leadership at NMA, the group moved its headquarters from downtown D.C. to Capitol Hill.

Gerard, 47, was traveling with his family Wednesday and could not be reached for comment. In a statement, he said, “This is a tremendous opportunity to serve a great American enterprise. I look forward to building on the contributions of Tom Reilly and his staff and to spreading the message that chemistry truly is essential to our nation’s way of life.”

A spokesman for NMA said the organization has set up a chief executive task force and, along with its board, will begin the search.

In a statement, NMA Chairman John Brinzo said that during Gerard’s four-year tenure “NMA tripled political giving, built a strong grassroots advocacy program, and modernized its communications capabilities. Jack focused the association on its core public policy objectives and solidified the merger of NMA’s two predecessor organizations, the American Mining Congress and the National Coal Association.”

Brinzo added, “Jack assembled an outstanding staff at NMA, and the Board is confident the association is in capable hands while we conduct the search for Jack’s successor.”

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