After 37 years at Motion Industries — a distributor of industrial maintenance, repair, and operation replacement parts — chairman Bill Stevens announced his plans to retire effective March 1, 2015.
"Bill was the CEO at Motion Industries for 18 years, and Motion has grown to become one of the leading industrial distribution companies in North America, largely attributable to his leadership," said Tom Gallagher, chairman and CEO of Motion's parent, Genuine Parts Company. "We wish him the very best in his retirement.
Tim Breen, named president and chief operating officer in 2013, then president and chief executive pfficer in 2014, will succeed Stevens to lead the company. The two have worked closely together during the last few years to ensure a smooth transition.
"Tim brings significant experience and skills to lead Motion Industries," Stevens said. "It will be exciting to see the future, as Tim and his management team continue the wonderful tradition of our company."
Stevens began his career with Motion Industries in 1978 as director of human resources. After several promotions to various other roles, he was named president and COO before becoming president and CEO in 1997. With Stevens at the helm, Motion Industries' sales grew from $1.85 billion (1997) to $4.8 billion in 2014.
A portion of this growth, in both sales and footprint, can be attributed to the 38 acquisitions completed during Stevens' tenure as President and CEO. Growth in product offerings, program introductions, and system advancements since 1997 have also contributed to Motion's expansion under Stevens' leadership. This success is reflected with the honor of numerous awards received from customers over the years for quality, service and efficiency.
Stevens has personally received a number of distinguished awards, including 1997 and 2006 Genuine Parts Company Manager of the Year, and the 2014 Bearing Specialists Association (BSA) Lifetime Achievement Award. He has been a BSA member since 1989 and has served in many capacities. Stevens has also been an active member of the Power Transmission Distributors Association (PTDA) for many years, as well as serving on numerous boards of both for-profit and nonprofit organizations in the Birmingham area.
Other industry recognition includes interviews in various trade publications. One in particular, Industrial Distribution, spotlighted his leadership in the lead feature story — and Stevens' portrait graced the issue's cover. He has also made significant editorial contributions to Maintenance Technology, Modern Distribution Management and other publications over the years.
Throughout his career, Stevens has remained dedicated to family, faith and community while managing to devote countless hours to the industry.