Fraser Shipyards Inc. Friday announced new hires and a promotion for key management positions. James Korthals has been hired as president and chief operating officer; Gene Walroos has been promoted to shipyard general manager, and Kevin Jones has been hired as director of operations of Northern Engineering Co.
Korthals came to Fraser in December after serving as president and chief executive officer of Cutler Magner Co., the lime and salt products manufacturer in Duluth. He also is a past chairman of Cutler Magner’s board. Korthals has 25 years’ experience managing the operations and production of large manufacturing facilities and mining companies across the country, including serving as a Great Lakes Port Facility Manager in Michigan.
Walroos was Fraser’s Shipyard superintendent prior to his promotion in December. He joined the company in 2003. His nearly 30-year career in the marine industry includes overseeing maintenance and repair operations for both deep-sea and inland-waters ships. Walroos was formerly school director of the American Maritime Officers’ School of Engineering and Navigation in Toledo, Ohio.
Jones came to Northern Engineering in January. He was previously with Cutler Magner Co., where he was plant manager of the company’s lime manufacturing facility in Superior. There he improved production line output and managed a $36 million capital expansion project. For the past 19 years, he has managed maintenance and production activities at a number of lime and cement manufacturing plants in the U.S.
“We are pleased to have such capable, experienced individuals on our management team,” said Todd Johnson, president and chairman of Reuben Johnson & Son Inc., parent company of Fraser Shipyards. “They will play a key role in expanding Fraser Shipyards’ and Northern Engineering’s services with a customer focus.”