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OPEI Board of Directors Plans Ahead for 2016
Kris Kiser says Industry Faces New Challenges and Opportunities


OPEI, which represents the interests of the outdoor power equipment, utility vehicle, and small engine manufacturing industries, recently held a meeting to welcome new board members and to discuss plans for the year.

The Board of Directors for the Outdoor Power Equipment Institute met in January to welcome new board members, discuss issues central to the industry's health and well-being, and make plans for 2016.

"It's evident we have a lot of new energy within the OPEI Board of Directors," said Kris Kiser, President and CEO of OPEI. "We have an involved and dedicated board to guide the outdoor power equipment industry forward in 2016."

The agenda included discussions about proposed changes to California's emissions regulations and attacks on the managed landscape from the drought in the West. Also discussed was the expansion of OPEI's TurfMutt environmental stewardship and education program, created in partnership with SCHOLASTIC; recent developments on ethanol and fuel pump labeling; and OPEI's consumer-based ethanol education program, Look Before You Pump.

"We are the voice of the outdoor power equipment industry, which is increasingly facing new challenges. Green space is under assault in drought-stricken areas and there are increased regulatory requirements evolving in California and other areas. We also remain concerned about consumer confusion over proper fueling because we're seeing greater ethanol fuel blends enter the marketplace supply, nationwide," said Kiser.

The OPEI Board of Directors is chaired by Lee Sowell, President - Outdoor Products, Techtronic Industries, N.A., Inc. The vice chair is Tim Merrett, VP, A & T Global Platform - Turf & Utility, Deere & Company. The Secretary/Treasurer is Daniel T. Ariens, CEO, Ariens Company. The immediate past chair is Paul Mullet, Chairman, President & CEO, Excel Industries.

OPEI welcomed new board member Jeff Hohler, President, Consumer Brands Division, Husqvarna Professional Products. Continuing their service on the OPEI Board of Directors are: Edward B. Cohen, Vice President - Government & Industry Relations, American Honda Motor Co., Inc.; Thomas G. Cromwell, Group President - Power, Kohler Company; Tim Dorsey, President, Echo Incorporated; Tom Duncan, President & CEO, Positec; Marc J. Dufour, President & CEO, Club Car, LLC; Bjoern Fischer, President, Stihl Incorporated; Peter Hampton, President, Active Exhaust Corp.; Jean Hlay, President & Chief Operating Officer, MTD Products Inc.; Michael J. Hoffman, Chairman & CEO, The Toro Company; Todd Teske, Chairman, President & CEO, Briggs & Stratton Corporation; David Withers, President, Jacobsen, A Textron Company.

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January 21, 2019, 9:09 pm PST

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