Thor Industries Inc. announced that Andy Graves will assume the position of chairman of the board, effective Aug. 1. According to a press release, Graves will be the company’s first independent chairman.

Graves has spent the past 35 years in leadership roles in global manufacturing businesses. He has extensive international experience having managed significant international operations while at FMC Technologies, CNH Industrial (Case Corp.), Dresser Industries, as well as nine years at Brunswick Corp. as president of the Brunswick Boat Group. “His expertise in brand management, product development and design, operations, and managing independent dealer networks have been invaluable to Thor “during his nearly nine years of service on the board of directors, the release stated.

Graves most recently served as president and CEO of privately held Motorsport Aftermarket Group (MAG) for four years, where he broadened his experience beyond the recreational boat market and into the powersports marketplace. Additionally, MAG’s distribution and e-commerce businesses, as well as the company’s brand portfolio of leading aftermarket accessory products, focused beyond new unit sales and into aftermarket sales and service.

These industries have significant parallels to the RV industry, allowing Graves to offer insights to the Thor leadership team. Graves retired as a full-time CEO in August 2018. He currently serves on the board of privately held S2 Yachts, and provides consulting and advisory services on a contract basis.

“I’m honored by the opportunity to be Thor’s first independent chairman,” commented Graves. “Over the nine years of time on the board, I have come to know and admire the management team. As I look forward to leading our board as chairman, I am confident that our management team has the leadership and vision to successfully navigate the global RV market.”

The company also announced that Jan Suwinski, who has served as a member of Thor’s board since 1999, will step down as lead director but remain on the board. During his time with the board, Suwinski chaired both the compensation and the audit committees. He has served as the company’s independent lead director since fiscal year 2013.

“Jan has been an important voice in our board room for many years. He’s been instrumental in the setting and monitoring of our strategic path. As we look ahead, our board will continue to be best in class with Andy Graves in the chairman role. Andy’s deep experience in the recreation industry is invaluable to our boardroom discussion,” offered Thor President and Chief Executive Officer Bob Martin.

Additionally, the company announced that as Graves assumes the role of chairman, he will resign as compensation and development committee chairman, effective Oct. 1, and board member Wilson Jones will assume that role on that date.