Dec. 1, 2007
Legrand North America (West Hartford, Conn.): Halsey Cook has been appointed president of the company's Electrical Wiring Systems division, which includes

Legrand North America (West Hartford, Conn.): Halsey Cook has been appointed president of the company's Electrical Wiring Systems division, which includes Cablofil/Legrand, Pass & Seymour/Legrand, and Wiremold/Legrand. Cook reports to Legrand North America president and CEO John Selldorff and replaces Mike Gambino, the division's retiring president. Cook comes to Legrand North America from Carrier, a division of United Technologies, where he was president of the Residential and Light Commercial Systems Division. During his 16 years with Carrier, he held numerous general management and marketing positions.

Hubbell Inc. (Orange, Conn.): Bob Murphy has been promoted to executive vice president, marketing and sales. He was previously senior group vice president of Hubbell Wiring System's platform in Milford, Conn. Murphy has 38 years of electrical industry experience and 32 years with Hubbell in a variety of sales management, product marketing and general management roles. In this new position, Murphy will be responsible for the growth of all Hubbell businesses including maximizing the strength of Hubbell brands with channel partners and end users of Hubbell products. Replacing Murphy is Bill Tolley, group vice president, Hubbell Wiring Systems. Tolley was previously senior vice president, operations and administration at Wiring Systems. Tolley has strong operational expertise and an extensive financial background. He has been with Hubbell for six years in January. Prior to joining Hubbell, Tolley held positions of increasing responsibility with United Technologies.

Schneider Electric North American Operating Division (Palatine, Ill.): Kristin Johnson-Holz has joined the management team as vice president of marketing. In her role, she will report to Chris Curtis, president of Schneider Electric USA, and is responsible for leading and coordinating the U.S. marketing offering and overseeing marketing performance management throughout the United States. Johnson-Holz has more than 11 years of executive experience in marketing and sales. Prior to joining Schneider Electric, she held several management positions at Grainger Inc., including senior director of marketing and advertising for Grainger Industrial Supply and marketing manager of national accounts and government.

TCP Inc. (Aurora, Ohio): Joe Colant has been promoted to president. Formerly the vice president of sales and marketing, Colant will now be responsible for overall corporate profitability and management of day-to-day business activities within the company's three divisions, including commercial and industrial, retail and other lighting manufacturers (OLMs). As president, a new position for TCP Inc., Colant will lead the sales, marketing, customer service, distribution, product management and engineering departments. In addition, Colant will direct lighting technology research and areas of organic and inorganic growth.

Fromm Electric Supply Corp. of Reading (Reading, Pa.): Lou Fromm has been promoted to vice president of marketing and communications. Fromm brings 12 years of diverse experience within the company to his new role. He has also held numerous positions within the electrical industry, including serving as National Association of Electrical Distributor's Young Executives Committee Chairperson in 2003. His responsibilities will include managing the company's marketing efforts, developing strategic growth initiatives and overseeing external communications.

Electrical Wholesalers, a division of US Electrical Services (Stoughton, Mass.): Dennis L. Cook has joined the company as vice president of business development. Cook is an industry veteran with more than 30 years of experience. Most recently he was president of Bennett Electric in Quincy, Mass. In his new role, Cook will focus on continuing the rapid growth of the EW business in upper New England. Over the last 10 months, EW has opened nine new locations in the greater Boston area, New Hampshire and Rhode Island. In January of this year the company also opened a new 150,000-square-foot central distribution center to service its growing business in the region.

Bridgeport Fittings (Stratford, Conn.): Eric Cerasale has been named technical sales manager. In this newly created position, Cerasale will be responsible for developing a national training strategy for sales representatives, distributors, end users, trade schools and the engineering community. Cerasale will also provide technical support for external customers and assist in the launch, training and support of new product introductions. Cerasale previously worked for WESCO and Spring & Buckley Inc., both electrical distributors in Connecticut, and for Panduit Corp. He was also employed as a product applications specialist at O-Z/Gedney. Cerasale is a licensed journeyman electrician.

NICOR Inc. (Albuquerque, N.M.): Wayne Anthony, a veteran of the lighting and electrical industry, was named to the newly created position of vice president of sales and marketing. This new position within NICOR was created to add more focus on new product creation and market expansion. In addition, the company has recently undergone a branding project with the goal of conveying a more uniform image to the market. Anthony comes to NICOR with 25 years of broad-based industry experience from all levels of the lighting and electrical industries. He has worked for companies such as Progress Lighting, Thomas & Betts, Cooper Lighting, and the Juno Lighting Group in positions ranging from regional sales manager to business unit vice president. Most recently, Anthony was the principal of ElectriPro, a lighting agency based in Memphis.

WinWholesale Inc. (Dayton, Ohio): Michael Souders has been appointed vice president of the company's central region to oversee sales and operations in 14 states from Canada to the Gulf Coast. The central region includes 146 of WinWholesale's 460 locally owned and operated companies in the United States. Companies in the region represent seven brands under which WinWholesale does business: Winnelson, Winair, Winlectric, Windustrial, Winsupply, Wintronic and Winwater Works. Souders joined WinWholesale from Heat Controller in Jackson, Mich., where he was vice president of sales. Souders is located at WinWholesale's headquarters in Dayton.


John Hardy, president and CEO of Capital Lighting & Supply (CLS), a subsidiary of Sonepar USA, has been elected 2007-2008 chairman of the board for the Washington Building Congress (WBC).

Hardy, who has been with CLS for 36 years, has served as president since 1995. He attended his first WBC event in 1970 and has been an involved member ever since.

“The WBC has played a significant role in my success over the years,” says Hardy. “I have made many friends and business contacts and have learned much about the business from being involved with so many of the industry's business leaders.”

The WBC has grown quickly over the past few years and Hardy said he plans to use this momentum to continue the growth of the organization and participation of its members.

With more than 950 members, the Washington Building Congress is the largest building industry association in the greater Washington and Mid-Atlantic regions.


Lee Nelson Guard, former owner and partner of Farmer Electrical Sales, died from a heart attack on Nov. 22 at his home. He was 59 years old. Guard was born in Columbus, Ohio. He moved to Greensboro with his family when he was 12 years old. After college, he had an extensive sales career in the electrical industry, and was the owner and partner of Farmer Electrical Sales since 1970. He became president in 1990. Guard was on the board of governors of NEMRA during the 1990s and achieved Certified Professional Manufacturers Representative (CPMR) credentials.

Guard is survived by his wife, Linda, daughters, Patty Guard Smith and Rebecca; sons, Tommy and Christopher; his granddaughter, Jayden Lynn Smith; his sister, Charlene Guard; and niece, Tonya Romeo.

Memorial contributions may be made to either Hospice of Greensboro, 2500 Summit Ave., Greensboro, N.C. 27405; Westminster Presbyterian Church, 3906 W. Friendly Avenue, Greensboro, N.C. 27410; or to the charity of one's choice.