WestRock CEO Steve Voorhees Named Executive Papermaker of the Year
March 1, 2016 - PaperAge announced that Steve Voorhees, Chief Executive Officer of WestRock, is the recipient of the 29th annual "Executive Papermaker of the Year" award. An exclusive interview with Mr. Voorhees will be published in the March/April 2016 issue of PaperAge.
PaperAge selects its Executive Papermaker of the Year based on corporate vision, strategic objectives and strong leadership both within the individual's company and in the paper industry as a whole. The award has been an industry tradition since 1988.
In January of 2015, Voorhees, who at that time was CEO of RockTenn, announced that RockTenn would merge with MeadWestvaco "to create a new, more powerful company with leadership positions in the global consumer and corrugated packaging markets." The deal created WestRock, which would have a combined equity value of $16 billion.
Following the merger, WestRock acquired SP Fiber Holdings, a producer of recycled containerboard and kraft and bag paper. The acquisition is expected to produce significant synergies and better position WestRock to serve the increasing demand for lighter weight containerboard and kraft paper.
In a continuation of strategic moves, WestRock in October formed a joint venture in Mexico with Grupo Gondi, whereby the two companies combined their operations in Mexico, creating a leading paper and packaging company in that country.
In January of 2016, WestRock completed the acquisition of Cenveo Packaging, a leading provider of value-add folded carton and litho-laminated display packaging. "By combining our operating expertise in folding cartons and integrating WestRock paperboard with Cenveo Packaging's packaging and printing capabilities, we will be able to better serve our customers while generating significant synergies and performance improvements," Voorhees explained at the close of the deal.
Steve Voorhees is chief executive officer of WestRock. Previously he was chief executive officer of RockTenn. Prior to his appointment as CEO, Voorhees served in various executive leadership roles, including president and chief operating officer; executive vice president and chief financial officer; and chief administrative officer.
Before joining RockTenn, Voorhees was in operations and executive roles at Sonat Inc., a diversified energy company headquartered in Birmingham, Alabama.
Voorhees earned a bachelor's degree in economics and mathematics from Northwestern University and a master of business administration from the University of Virginia Darden School of Business.
WestRock is a global industry leader in corrugated and consumer packaging. The recently combined company has 14 million tons per year of mill capacity and annual sales of $15 billion. The company has more than 250 operating and business locations spanning North America, South America, Europe and Asia, and employs 41,000 people.
Originally founded in 1884 as a paper industry news publication titled, “United States Paper Maker”, PaperAge today has evolved into the premier publication for paper industry professionals around the world.