Graco Inc., the Minneapolis-based manufacturer and supplier of equipment to measure, control, dispense and spray fluid and powder materials, announced on Tuesday that Dale Johnson, the company’s Worldwide Contractor Equipment Division president, intends to retire in early 2025.

In a Dec. 5 news release, the company said that in anticipation of Johnson’s retirement, a succession plan had been executed that involved David J. Thompson, Graco’s current vice president of engineering, Contractor Equipment Division.

Beginning Jan. 1, Thompson will be elevated to president of Graco’s Worldwide Contractor Equipment Division; Johnson will assume the role of Chief Commercial Development Officer to support the leadership transition and facilitate commercial and cross-divisional initiatives.

“Throughout his tenure spanning almost five decades at Graco, Dale has demonstrated exceptional leadership and an unrelenting competitive spirit,” said Graco’s President and Chief Executive Officer, Mark W. Sheahan. “Under his leadership, the Contractor Equipment Division has experienced extraordinary growth, evolving into a more than one billion-dollar business propelled by pioneering new product introductions, the establishment of a thriving home center segment, penetration into new markets and an unwavering commitment to excellence in both quality and customer service.” 

Thompson, who had been vice president of Engineering, Contractor Equipment Division, since 2021, joined Graco as an engineer in 1988 and held a series of positions of increasing responsibility within the Contractor Equipment Division throughout his career.

“Dave is held in high regard across our Contractor Equipment Division and throughout Graco,” Sheahan said. “His central role in addressing the global needs of contractors is a testament to his innovative approach in leading the development of key new products in the division for the last two decades. 

“With a comprehensive grasp of our contractor business, including its talented employees, collaborative partners, end-user dynamics, market landscapes, and product portfolio, Dave’s seamless transition into leading the division is something that I am excited about,” Sheahan added.  

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