Louisville, Ky. - Michael McDermott has been tapped to succeed GE Appliances veteran Dave Bilas as head of the company's sales organization.
Bilas served as sales VP since 2007, and had been "instrumental in helping GE reposition in response to the housing collapse and economic downturn," the manufacturer said. He is leaving to pursue opportunities outside the company.
In a statement, Jim Campbell, president/CEO of GE Appliances & Lighting, thanked Bilas for his many contributions and service to the company. "Dave has been a great GE ambassador and has assembled an outstanding team that will help GE continue to win with customers," he said.
McDermott has led the company's cooking business since 2009. He joined GE in 1993 as an area sales manager for retail sales, and held a variety of posts of increasing responsibility including cooking products marketing manager, merchandising general manager, and sales general manager for the contract channel.
"Mike's breadth of experience across the commercial operation has made him well equipped to understand our customers' needs from a variety of angles," Campbell said. "That, coupled with his demonstrated leadership skills and strong process orientation, makes him a great fit for this role and the ideal person to build upon the outstanding relationships built under Dave's leadership."
McDermott was succeeded as product general manger for cooking by Melanie Cook, a 15-year GE veteran who joins the appliances division from GE Industrial Communications, a unit of GE Digital Energy. A former president and general manager of Azdel, a joint venture between PPG Industries and GE, Cook also served at GE Plastics and on the company's corporate audit staff.
"Melanie's experience leading and growing businesses in GE, along with her proven ability to execute, make her ideal for this role," said Campbell. "Her skills and experience will be invaluable as we continue to innovate and grow our cooking line with the launch of more than 100 new cooking products in 2011 and the kickoff of our new product investment programs for wall ovens and freestanding ranges."
Both appointments are effective immediately.