Caterpillar Announces Officer Changes Including Retirements and Appointment of a New Vice President

June 11, 2015

Caterpillar Announces Officer Changes Including Retirements and Appointment of a New Vice President


PEORIA, Ill. – Caterpillar Inc. (NYSE: CAT) today announced the following officer changes:

  • Mary Bell, vice president with responsibility for the Building Construction Products Division, has elected to retire. Ken Hoefling has been appointed as a Caterpillar vice president to replace Bell. Both moves are effective July 1, 2015.
  • Mark Sweeney, vice president with responsibility for the Europe South America Operations Division, has elected to retire effective August 1, 2015.         
  • William Finerty, vice president with responsibility for the Diversified Products Division, has elected to leave the company to pursue other opportunities. His move is effective August 1, 2015.

Mary Bell Retirement

After 29 years of dedicated service to Caterpillar, Mary Bell, vice president with responsibility for the Building Construction Products (BCP) Division, has elected to retire.

“Mary grew up in the construction industry and has a deep understanding of customer value,” said Tom Pellette, Caterpillar group president with responsibility for the company’s Construction Industries segment. “She instilled that understanding in others and constantly drove changes to improve value for the customer and the enterprise, including the major turnaround she led in BCP, enabling that division to be a high-performing growth business delivering excellent value to the company. Mary is a strong people developer and mentor; she leaves behind a tremendous people legacy. I thank Mary for her many contributions to Caterpillar, and wish her and her husband, David, a long and happy retirement.”

Bell joined Caterpillar in 1981 as a parts and service field representative. From 1983 to 1988, she worked for Yancey Bros. Co., a Cat® dealer, gaining direct dealer experience that proved invaluable throughout her career. She returned to Caterpillar in 1988 and progressed through various management positions in parts marketing, remanufacturing and service support. Bell served as a machine business manager for Caterpillar’s Latin American Division from 1996 to 1999 and later became the general manager of the Cat Distribution Services Division. In 2004, she was named a Caterpillar vice president where she led the Logistics Division and served as chairman and president of Cat Logistics Services Inc., the company’s former third-party logistics business. In 2007, she moved to her current position as vice president of BCP.

Bell has a bachelor’s degree from the University of Iowa and is a graduate of the University of Michigan’s Executive Program and the Corporate Leadership Center/Northwestern University CEO Perspectives Program.

Mark Sweeney Retirement

Mark Sweeney, vice president with responsibility for the Europe South America Operations Division, has elected to retire following more than two decades served at Caterpillar and its wholly owned subsidiary, FG Wilson (Engineering) Ltd.

“Mark has a unique blend of engineering, marketing and operations background, which made him the ideal person to successfully lead the recent transformation of many of our key European operations, positioning them to be globally competitive,” said Pellette. “He came to Caterpillar through our acquisition of FG Wilson in the mid-1990s. We immediately recognized his technical expertise and leadership skills, and he’s been an outstanding performer ever since. I thank Mark for his tireless service and wish him, his wife Colette and their family all the best in retirement.”   

As part of Caterpillar’s overall cost management efforts and focus on creating end-to-end businesses, groups within Sweeney’s division, which include manufacturing operations for Caterpillar Belgium S.A., Caterpillar France S.A., European Fabrications and Caterpillar Brazil Ltd., will be absorbed into other areas of the company. 

Sweeney joined FG Wilson in 1994 as the manager of research and development following his time as an engineering manager with Mercury Marine based in the United States. After coming to FG Wilson, he held a number of research and engineering leadership positions with increasing responsibility and, in 2000, was named a FG Wilson vice president with responsibility for product development and FG Wilson marketing services. He was appointed FG Wilson managing director in 2002. In 2006, Sweeney was promoted to global operations director for Caterpillar’s Electric Power Division. In October 2011, he was elected a Caterpillar vice president and into his current role based in Geneva, Switzerland.

Sweeney, a native of Co. Fermanagh, Northern Ireland, graduated from Queen's University, Belfast, with a 1st Class Honours Degree in mechanical engineering in 1981 and a Ph.D. in mechanical engineering in 1986. He also participated in the Darden Executive Development Program at the University of Virginia in 2004. He was awarded an Order of the British Empire (OBE) in the 2007 Queen's Birthday Honours List for Services to Business and Commerce in Northern Ireland and an honorary D.SC. degree from The Queens University of Belfast in 2011.

William Finerty Departure

Bill Finerty, vice president with responsibility for the Diversified Products Division (DPD), has elected to leave the company to pursue other opportunities. As part of Caterpillar’s cost management efforts, the groups within DPD will be absorbed within other company divisions. Those groups include Caterpillar Industrial & Waste Group, Defense & Federal Products, Forest Products, Global On-Highway Truck Group, Global Paving and OEM Solutions Group.

“I want to thank Bill for his contributions to Caterpillar. His enthusiastic customer focus combined with his extensive marketing, dealer development and industry experience made him a valuable member of our team for three decades,” said Rob Charter, group president with responsibility for Caterpillar’s Customer and Dealer Support business. “I wish Bill well in his new endeavors.”

Finerty joined Caterpillar in 1984 through the marketing training program and held numerous positions in the areas of marketing, finance and mining before transitioning to finance representative positions in Cat Financial Services in 1988. Over the next decade, Finerty held assignments with increasing responsibility, which included project engineering responsibility for track-type tractors, business research and planning as well as positions in Geneva that included product/marketing manager of mining and merchandising manager accountable for Building Construction Products. After returning to the United States, his roles included San Francisco district manager, commercial mining manager, marketing manager, revenue manager and regional manager for the Americas Distribution Services Division (ADSD). In 2011, Finerty was named vice president with responsibility for ADSD, and in October 2013 he assumed his current position.

Finerty holds a bachelor's degree in accounting and Executive Education certificates from Bradley University and IMD (International Institute for Management Development) located in Lausanne, Switzerland.

Ken Hoefling Appointed Vice President

Following Mary Bell’s retirement from Caterpillar, Caterpillar’s Board of Directors has appointed Ken Hoefling as vice president with responsibility for the Building Construction Products (BCP) Division.

“First and foremost, Ken is an exceptional leader who enables his teams to succeed. His extensive operations and engineering background, coupled with his global experience, make him an exemplary candidate to lead BCP,” said Pellette. “Ken is also known for his acute focus on delivering results and serving as an agent for innovative change, two qualities that will serve him well in this role. He understands the importance of connecting operations and design with customer value, which is ideal for this business as we continue to grow our leadership in this segment of the construction industry.”

Hoefling began his Caterpillar career as an engineer in Peoria, Illinois, in 1990. Engineering roles then took him to Grenoble, France, and then back to Peoria as a supervisor. In 2002, he joined the Product Support Division in marketing roles with increasing responsibility, including a facility manager role in Shanghai, China. Hoefling became general manager in the Reman Components Division in 2007, which included responsibility for operations in Shanghai and Singapore as well as Mossville and East Peoria, Illinois. He held that role until 2013 when he started his current responsibilities as general manager of Steel Products in the Remanufacturing Components and Work Tools Division based in Peoria.

Hoefling holds a bachelor’s degree from Iowa State University and an Executive MBA from the Caterpillar Digging Deep program at Stanford University.


About Caterpillar:

For 90 years, Caterpillar Inc. has been making sustainable progress possible and driving positive change on every continent. Customers turn to Caterpillar to help them develop infrastructure, energy and natural resource assets. With 2014 sales and revenues of $55.184 billion, Caterpillar is the world’s leading manufacturer of construction and mining equipment, diesel and natural gas engines, industrial gas turbines and diesel-electric locomotives. The company principally operates through its three product segments - Construction Industries, Resource Industries and Energy & Transportation - and also provides financing and related services through its Financial Products segment. For more information, visit To connect with us on social media, visit


Doug Hoerr, vice president with responsibility for the Material Handling & Underground Division.


Greg Folley, vice president with responsibility for the Sustainable Solutions Division.


Tana Utley, vice president with responsibility for the Large Power Systems Division.