Wednesday, September 21, 2011

Breaking news: Withers named president of Jacobsen, Wilkinson to retire

David Withers has been promoted to the position of president of Jacobsen, effective October 1, 2011. Withers has been serving as managing director of the Ransomes division of Jacobsen, located in the United Kingdom, since January 2005, overseeing international operations for all Jacobsen brands as well as the E-Z-GO brand in Europe.

“I’m very excited about this opportunity. Having worked in the golf and turf maintenance industry for over 25 years, 19 of those with the Jacobsen team, this appointment is what I have always aspired to do. I look forward to working with the team to grow our market share around the world and continuing to establish Jacobsen as a leader in turf maintenance products,” Withers says.

Withers joined Textron in 1992 as a regional sales manager for Jacobsen in the UK. In 1996, he was promoted to the position of national accounts manager, where he focused on developing business with key customers across Europe. In 2002, he was promoted to the position of sales and marketing director before his appointment in 2005 as managing director of Ransomes Jacobsen.

Scott Donnelly, Textron CEO, says Withers is a proven leader in the golf industry. “With his broad international experience — which spans over 45 countries — and his strong track record in business development and operational excellence, I am confident that he is the right person to maximize the growth opportunities that lie ahead for Jacobsen,” Donnelly says.

Withers will succeed Dan Wilkinson, who is retiring from the company after 14 years of service to Textron. Under Wilkinson’s leadership, Jacobsen made great strides in improving its operating efficiency and reinvigorating its product offering, including the introduction of the Eclipse 322 — the world's first hybrid riding greens mower.

Wilkinson was named president of Jacobsen on Sept. 29, 2005. He joined the company in 1997 as director of national sales accounts at Greenlee, Textron's professional tools business. Prior to working for Textron, Wilkinson worked at General Electric for 17 years in positions such as distribution planning and marketing and sales.

Look for an interview with Withers soon in an upcoming issue of Golfdom.

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