ATLANTA--(BUSINESS WIRE)--Newell Rubbermaid (NYSE: NWL) today announced it has appointed Paula S. Larson, a global executive known for building high-performing organizations and employee development, to the position of Executive Vice President and Chief Human Resources Officer, effective Dec. 16. She succeeds James M. Sweet, who is retiring after nearly a decade of leading the company’s transformation efforts.
Larson, age 50, has built her career leading change as both an HR business partner and strategic consultant. Her emphasis on cultural and geographic diversity comes from having worked extensively across 80 countries, including living in Asia, Europe and North America. Most recently, she was Chief Human Resources Officer for The Western Union Company, where she revamped the company’s approach to people development and drove a performance-based culture to help accelerate growth. Previously, as Chief Human Resources Officer at Invensys plc, the London-based global technology group, she helped engineer the transition from a holding company into an integrated operating company, which helped drive Invensys to a top-5 performance among the London FTSE100 during the difficult recession year of 2009.
“The development of our people is at the foundation of our Growth Game Plan – and throughout her career, Paula has helped companies navigate change and empower employees to achieve sustainable growth,” said Michael Polk, Newell Rubbermaid’s President and Chief Executive Officer. “As we deploy our new operating model and build key capabilities to speed, Paula has the perfect combination of strategic and executional HR leadership to strengthen our talent base and support our global growth ambition.”
“Newell Rubbermaid is a company with strong brands, and I am excited to be joining at this key moment when the transition to a new operating model is allowing employees to work in a more empowering environment to enhance company value,” said Larson. “My two key goals are to help ensure we delight shareholders and create an ‘I want to work here’ culture for Newell’s diverse workforce.”
Before Invensys, Larson was VP of Human Resources for the Hydraulics division of Eaton Corp., where she helped support the globalization of this complex business unit. She also spent over a decade at GE, where she won several coveted Executive Awards for HR leadership and was one of the company’s first Six Sigma black belts in human resources. Before that, Larson spent nearly five years at a global HR consultancy, Dugan Unlimited, where she lived and worked extensively overseas during assignments for global clients. She has a B.A. in Psychology from Michigan State, an MBA with international business concentration from the University of New Haven and an M.A. in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from New York University.
Sweet, age 61, announced his intention to retire after nearly ten years of HR partnership with three Newell Rubbermaid chief executives.
“Jim has helped shape Newell Rubbermaid into the company we are today, helping bring together the siloed structures of the old global business unit model into the new operating model we launched earlier this year,” said CEO Polk. “Jim’s commitment to every day great execution has been a model for our organization and is beginning to pay off in our results as we drive the Growth Game Plan into Action. I have been very pleased to have had the opportunity to work with Jim and wish him only the best in his retirement.”
About Newell Rubbermaid
Newell Rubbermaid Inc., an S&P 500 company, is a global marketer of consumer and commercial products with 2012 sales of approximately $5.6 billion and a strong portfolio of leading brands, including Sharpie®, Paper Mate®, Rubbermaid Commercial Products®, Irwin®, Lenox®, Parker®, Waterman®, Rubbermaid®, Levolor®, Calphalon®, Goody®, Graco®, Aprica® and Dymo®. As part of the company’s Growth Game Plan, Newell Rubbermaid is making sharper portfolio choices and investing in new marketing and innovation to accelerate performance.
This press release and additional information about Newell Rubbermaid are available on the company’s Web site, www.newellrubbermaid.com.