Industry & Services >> CEO Interviews >> March 11, 2002
TWST: Would you begin with a brief overview of the history and evolution DON DEFOSSET was named President and Chief Executive Officer of Walter
Industries, Inc., and appointed to the company's Board of Directors in
November 2000. He was named Chairman of the company in March 2002. Mr.
DeFosset gained extensive manufacturing and operations management
experience during a 29-year career in heavy industry, most recently as
Chief Operating Officer of Dura Automotive Systems, Inc., a $2.6 billion
Rochester Hills, Michigan-based automotive components manufacturer.
Prior to that, Mr. DeFosset spent three years as Corporate Executive
Vice President and Truck Group President with Chicago-based Navistar
International Corporation. From 1993 to 1996 he served as President of
Southfield, Michigan-based AlliedSignal, Inc.'s $1 billion Safety
Restraint Systems division. From 1989 to 1992 Mr. DeFosset was Executive
Vice President, Operations with the Allentown, Pennsylvania,
headquarters of Mack Trucks, Inc. Prior to that, he spent 18 years in a
series of progressively more responsible finance, manufacturing and
executive positions with the domestic and European automotive operations
of Rockwell International. Mr. DeFosset is a graduate of Purdue
University, where he earned a Bachelor's degree in Industrial
Engineering. He received his MBA from Harvard Business School in 1974.
Currently, Mr. DeFosset serves on the Board of Directors of Terex
Corporation and Safelite Auto Glass. He is also very active in community
affairs in the Tampa Bay area. Mr. DeFosset is on the Board of Governors
of the Greater Tampa Chamber of Commerce and the Florida Chamber of
Commerce, the Board of Trustees of the Boys and Girls Clubs of Tampa
Bay, the Board of Trustees of the University of Tampa, the Board of
Trustees for the Tampa Bay Performing Arts Center, the Board of
Directors of the Florida Council on Economic Education and a member of
the Florida Council of 100. Profile
of Walter Industries?
Mr. DeFosset: Walter Industries has its roots in the homebuilding
business. An entrepreneur named