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MSA Safety board elects new leadership, with Nish Vartanian as non-executive chairman and Steve Blanco as CEO

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Nish Vartanian elected non-executive chairman

The Board of Directors of MSA Safety, Inc. has elected Nishan J. Vartanian as Non-Executive Chairman of the Board.

This decision, made on May 10th, follows Vartanian’s previously announced plans to retire as MSA Safety’s Chief Executive Officer.

He will retire as a full-time employee at the end of the month, having served as CEO since 2018 and Chairman since 2020.

Vartanian’s tenure at MSA Safety has been marked by significant developments and advancements in the company’s safety products and solutions.

His transition to Non-Executive Chairman ensures he remains a part of the company’s strategic direction while stepping back from day-to-day operations.

Steve Blanco assumes role of president and CEO

On the same day, Steven C. Blanco officially assumed the role of President and Chief Executive Officer of MSA Safety.

Blanco, who has been with the company since 2012, succeeds Vartanian in this role.

This transition was part of a planned management succession announced on February 22, 2024.

Blanco becomes the 10th CEO in the 110-year history of MSA Safety.

He previously served as President and Chief Operating Officer, bringing extensive experience and a deep understanding of the company’s operations to his new role.

MSA Safety’s leadership continuity and strategic direction

Vartanian’s move to Non-Executive Chairman and Blanco’s promotion to CEO are part of a strategic succession plan aimed at ensuring continuity and stable leadership within MSA Safety.

This leadership change reflects the company’s commitment to maintaining its position as a leader in the safety products industry.

Blanco’s long tenure at MSA Safety and his previous role as Chief Operating Officer position him well to lead the company forward.

His leadership is expected to build on the foundation laid by Vartanian, continuing the company’s focus on innovation and safety solutions.

IFSJ comment

The recent leadership changes at MSA Safety mark a significant shift in the company’s executive structure.

Nish Vartanian’s election as Non-Executive Chairman ensures his continued involvement with the company’s strategic decisions, even as he steps down from his role as CEO.

His retirement from full-time duties closes a notable chapter in MSA Safety’s history, characterized by growth and innovation under his leadership.

Steve Blanco’s assumption of the CEO role signifies a new era for MSA Safety.

With his extensive experience within the company and a clear understanding of its operations, Blanco is well-prepared to guide MSA Safety into the future.

This planned succession highlights the company’s foresight in leadership continuity, aiming to sustain its long-standing reputation for developing advanced safety products and solutions.

As the industry continues to evolve, MSA Safety’s strategic leadership transitions are poised to support its ongoing commitment to safety and innovation.

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