Invacare Corporation, Elyria, Ohio, has announced the retirement of Gerald B. Blouch, president and CEO, effective July 31. An Invacare news release notes that Blouch is also retiring from his position as a member of the Board of Directors. Robert K. Gudbranson, Invacare senior vice president and CFO, has been named the interim president and CEO, while retaining his role as the company’s CFO, the release says.

In the release, Blouch calls his time as part of Invacare’s senior leadership team during the past 24 years, most notably as CFO, a “privilege.” While the decision to retire was difficult, “I am confident that, despite its short-term challenges, Invacare has an incredibly strong future.”

In 1990, Blouch initially joined Invacare as its CFO. In 1994, Blouch became COO and was responsible for the operations of all domestic and international business units, the release reports. He was named president and a director of the company in 1996 and assumed the role of CEO in January 2011.

The release notes that Gudbranson has served as Invacare’s senior vice president and CFO since 2008. Prior to this role, Gudbranson served as vice president of Strategic Planning and Acquisitions for Lincoln Electric Holdings Inc and before Lincoln Electric, held a variety of roles of increasing responsibility for Invacare. These roles included director, Business and Development and Investor Relations, assistant treasurer, and European Finance director.

Mal Mixon, chairman of Invacare’s Board of Directors, articulates the company’s gratefulness for Blouch’s contributions. “He was an integral part of building Invacare into the $1.4 billion world leader of home and long-term care medical devices. The Board will be actively searing for a successor to take the company to the next level. In the interim, the Board has full confidence in Rob Gudbranson, who has distinguished himself as chief financial officer.”

[Source: Invacare]