Manuel Brocke-Benz was named our President and Chief Executive Officer on January 3, 2013. From July 25, 2012 to January 3, 2013, Manuel served as our interim Chief Executive Officer, while also serving as the Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Europe, Lab and Distribution Services, a position he held since January 2006. Manuel was elected to the Board in September 2012 and currently is the Chair of the Finance Committee.
Prior to assuming his position as Senior Vice President and Managing Director of Europe, Lab and Distribution Services, he served as Senior Vice President and General Manager of Continental Europe from 2003 to 2005 and as Corporate Senior Vice President, Process Excellence from 2001 to 2003. Manuel initially joined the Company in 1987. Manuel earned a law degree from Albert-Ludwigs University in Freiburg, Germany. Manuel 's leadership role and more than 20 years of service with us in a variety of senior-level positions, together with his extensive knowledge of our business, strategy and industry on an international basis and his training as a lawyer make him a valuable member of the Board.
Gregory L. Cowan is our Senior Vice President and Chief Financial Officer, a position he has held since June 2009. In his current role, Greg is responsible for our financial operations on a global basis and for overseeing our Investor Relations activities.
Prior to assuming his current position, Greg served as our Vice President and Corporate Controller since December 2004. Since joining us, Greg has overseen compliance efforts, the development of global policies and procedures, as well as internal and external reporting processes. He has also been directly involved in various strategic projects involving commercial activities and 115 changes to systems and infrastructure. Prior to joining us, Greg spent approximately five years at CDI Corporation, a professional services company, in various senior financial positions, most recently as Senior Vice President and Chief Accounting Officer. Prior to his time with CDI Corporation, he was Vice President of internal audit at Crown Cork and Seal Company Inc. for approximately six years and a Senior Manager at PricewaterhouseCoopers LLC, where he served in various audit and consulting capacities for 11 years. In the past five years, Greg also served as a Director of Emtec, Inc. Greg earned a B.A. in accounting from Rutgers University.
Peter Schüle is our Senior Vice President and President, EMEA-APAC Lab and Distribution Services. Peter has served as our Senior Vice President, Europe Lab and Distribution Services since June 2013, and in January 2014, was given additional responsibility for our Asia-Pacific business. In his current role, Peter is responsible for our sales, marketing, services and operations for the European and Asia-Pacific business.
Prior to joining us, Peter served as the Vice President Supply Chain for Europe, the Middle East and Africa for Sigma-Aldrich Corporation, where he was responsible for the development and implementation of a new and efficient European Supply Chain organization and the implementation of customized solutions for strategic accounts. Over a period of 19 years, Peter held various roles within Sigma-Aldrich with increasing responsibility, including Director European Distribution, Country Manager Germany and General Manager for Central Europe. Peter earned an M.B.A. from Heilbronn University in Heilbronn, Germany.
Mark McLoughlin is our Senior Vice President and President, U.S. Lab and Distribution Services, a position he has held since July 2012. In his current role, Mark leads all sales, marketing, services and operations for our business in the United States.
Mark joined us in September 2008. Prior to his current role, Mark served as Senior Vice President of Category Management as well as Senior Vice President of Emerging Businesses. Mark brings over 30 years of commercial and strategic management experience to his role. He has been responsible for leading a combination of our distribution, manufacturing and regional businesses throughout North America. Before joining us, Mark held the position of Senior Vice President, Chief Marketing Officer for Cardinal Health, Inc. based in Geneva, Switzerland, where he designed and implemented an International Strategic Marketing Organization to support all Cardinal Health business outside of the United States and Canada. Prior to this position, from 2002 to 2007, Mark was Senior Vice President, General Manager of Cardinal Health’s Scientific Products Clinical Laboratory business located in McGaw Park, Illinois. Mark is currently a member of the Board of Directors at Cytomedix, Inc. and serves on the Board of Advisors for the Center for Services Leadership, W.P. Carey School of Business at Arizona State University. Mark earned a B.A. in psychology from the University of Arizona.
Theodore C. Pulkownik is our Senior Vice President, Strategy, Corporate Development and Emerging Businesses, a position he has held since July 2012. Ted’s responsibilities include global mergers and acquisitions, corporate-center led initiatives and strategy and our Global Export organization. In addition, in 2012, Ted was given responsibility for our emerging businesses, including Canada, Mexico and 116 Central and South America.
Prior to his current position, Ted served as Senior Vice President, Strategy and Corporate Development from July 2004 to July 2012. Prior to joining us in 2004, Ted held two positions with Standard & Poor’s Financial Services LLC, a subsidiary of The McGraw-Hill Companies, Inc. From 2002 until 2004, he was a Managing Director of Standard & Poor’s Corporate Value Consulting, and from 2000 to 2002, he was its Senior Vice President, business development. Before joining Standard & Poor’s, Ted was a Senior Vice President for Holberg Industries, Inc., a diversified private holding company located in Greenwich, Connecticut, from 1999 until 2000. From 1997 until 1999, he was a Managing Director, corporate development, for General Electric Capital Corporation. Prior to General Electric, Ted spent five years with McKinsey & Company, a global management consulting firm, as a consultant in its New York and Connecticut offices and nine years with Procter & Gamble Co., a global manufacturer of a wide range of consumer goods, in Brand Management and Finance. Ted earned a B.A. in business administration from the University of Wisconsin and an M.B.A. from the University of Michigan.
Gerry Christian is our Senior Vice President and Chief Information Officer, a position he has held since August 2012. In this role, Gerry is responsible for our global information services, including the management of business unit and corporate shared application services, business continuity, infrastructure and operations, and information security and risk management. From January 2011 until August 2012, Gerry served as Vice President of Shared Services as well as Vice President, Pricing and Contract Administration and from March 2007 until December 2010, as Vice President and Country Manager for VWR Ireland. Gerry joined us in 1993, and from 1993 to 2007, served in the positions of General Manager and Vice President, Finance at VWR Science Education and General Manager for VWR Canada. Gerry earned a B.S. in accounting from Canisius College and an M.B.A. from the University of Buffalo, with a concentration in finance.
Stephan W. Labonté is our Senior Vice President, Marketing, a position he has held since October 2012. In his current role, Stephan is responsible for our supplier relationships, marketing and category management functions on a global basis and the customer segment teams in Europe. Stephan joined us in 1995. Prior to his current role, Stephan served as Senior Vice President of EU Marketing from February 2009 to September 2012, Vice President of EU Marketing from January 2008 to January 2009, Vice President, Market Development Europe from 2005 to 2008 and Vice President, Global E-Services from 2000 to 2005. During the years of 1995 to 2000, Stephan served in a variety of marketing and sales roles. Stephan earned an M.S. in biology from Johann Goethe University in Frankfurt, Germany.
Ulf Kepper is our Senior Vice President for VWR Services, a position he has held since June 2014. In his current role, Ulf is responsible for our global service offerings under the VWRCATALYST brand including onsite services to support our customer’s operations. Prior to this role, Ulf served as Vice President for Global Marketing Services responsible for product data management, marketing communications and e-business. Since joining in 1991, Ulf has held various roles including Vice President of Marketing Services for Europe from 2004 to 2008, Vice President of e-business for Europe from 2001 to 2004, and in several different information technology roles during the years of 1991 through 2001. Ulf earned degrees in computer science and economics from the University of Darmstadt in Darmstadt, Germany.
George Van Kula is our Senior Vice President, Human Resources, General Counsel and Secretary. George has served as Senior Vice President, General Counsel and Secretary since May 2006, and in March 2013, George was given additional responsibility for our Human Resources organization.
George joined us from Honeywell International Inc., a diversified technology and manufacturing company, where he served as Vice President and General Counsel, Europe, Middle East and Africa (EMEA), based in Brussels, Belgium. George joined Honeywell in December 1996 and held several positions before becoming Vice President and General Counsel, EMEA in November 2001. He was responsible for the legal affairs of Honeywell’s EMEA operations with over $7 billion in revenue and 27,000 employees. Prior to joining Honeywell, George spent the first eight years of his legal career with Latham & Watkins LLP in the Los Angeles and London offices, providing counsel to domestic and foreign companies and investment banks in a variety of mergers and acquisitions, corporate finance transactions and general corporate matters. George earned a J.D. from the University of Michigan Law School and a B.A. from the University of Notre Dame.
Doug Pitts is our Vice President and Corporate Controller, a position he has held since July 2013. In his current role, Doug is responsible for our internal and external reporting, as well as managing our system of internal controls. Prior to this role, Doug served as Vice President, Internal Audit from 2011 to June 2013. Since joining us in 2001, he has held many positions, including Vice President and Assistant Corporate Controller from 2007 to 2010, Vice President, Corporate Finance from 2005 to 2007 and Vice President and North American Controller from 2001 to 2005. Prior to joining us, Doug held a variety of positions at Mallinckrodt Inc. from 1993 to 2001 and Ernst & Young from 1982 to 1993. Doug earned a B.S. from the University of Illinois. Doug is also a Certified Public Accountant.