Caterpillar vice president Chris Schena will retire in July 2012. Mark Sweeney, who was most recently operations director for the company’s electric power division, will succeed him.

Caterpillar group president Rich Lavin said, “Since joining Caterpillar in Belgium in 1972, Chris has demonstrated outstanding business leadership skills with a proven record of delivering superior operational results while always maintaining a focus on developing people within his organizations.

“During his distinguished career, Chris has provided leadership to Caterpillar business units and operations on three continents. He was a pioneer of lean manufacturing processes while leading Caterpillar’s operations in Brazil in the late 1990s and as a result, Caterpillar’s manufacturing operations in Brazil remain among the very best within the company.”

On Sweeney, Lavin added, “Mark was managing FG Wilson’s research and development group when Caterpillar acquired the company in the mid 1990s, and we immediately recognised his technical expertise and leadership skills. With his engineering, marketing and operations background, and based on his outstanding leadership within FG Wilson and the electric power division, Mark is an ideal fit for this new role.”