December 19, 2002
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Richard Omlor

Richard Omlor succeeds Malte vonMatthiessen—

YSI CEO steps down earlyIn a surprise move two weeks ago, YSI Incorporated CEO Malte vonMatthiessen announced that he was immediately stepping down as head of the company, and that successor Richard Omlor would begin the next day as YSI’s new Chief Executive.

VonMatthiessen made the announcement at a party for YSI managers and board members at his home on Thursday, Dec. 5, his birthday. Only his wife had been advised ahead of time of his plans.

Earlier this year, vonMatthiessen announced his plans to retire effective Jan. 1, 2003, and the company named Omlor as his successor. VonMatthiessen will continue with the company as chairman of the board of directors and consultant.

VonMatthiessen said he decided to speed up the transition process in order to facilitate smooth business operations in the coming year.

“I wanted to give Rick and the management team a chance to get all the activities and meetings and press releases and celebrations out of the way before the holidays so when we all get back to work we can get a running start in the New Year,” he said.

Also, he said, “Rick is ready now. Why delay?”

Omlor, who was surprised by the announcement, said the timing has worked well.

“It was a wonderful decision,” he said, because it “lets me get a lot of administrative things out of the way so that the first of the year I can focus on business.”

The transition has been a smooth one, said Omlor, partly because it’s been long in coming. VonMatthiessen announced to colleagues several years ago that he would retire at this time, and the company began to consider possible replacements. After a search outside the company, YSI officials chose to pick a successor from within. Two years ago, Omlor was named YSI president, a move that made likely his eventual succession to CEO.

“We felt it was important to have continuity of leadership,” said vonMatthiessen. “Rick has a tremendous amount of potential for professional growth, which he has exhibited consistently.” Plus, vonMatthiessen added, “I like him personally. He’s a good person.”

Omlor began his association with YSI in 1995 as director of manufacturing. Since then, he has served as director of the company’s YSI Temperature division, as senior vice president and most recently as president.

Before coming to YSI, Omlor was director of operations at Pitney Bowes in Miamisburg and held several manufacturing and engineering positions at Spectra Physics. He holds a degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Dayton and has completed the executive program at the University of Michigan Business School.

A lifelong Dayton-area resident, Omlor and his wife, Liz Hardy, reside in Kettering.

YSI Incorporated is an employee-owned company that develops applications for collecting, monitoring and assessing the physical and biochemical properties in water, bioprocessing and a variety of medical, aerospace and industrial settings, all of which are aimed at promoting an ecologically sustainable habitat. Its three business units are YSI Environmental, YSI Temperature and YSI Live Sciences.

“It’s a wonderful company,” said Omlor. “I’m excited about this opportunity.”

—Diane Chiddister