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Plywood Group Names New President as Ed Elias Retires


March 15, 2021 | Bill Esler

Tacoma, WA – Mark Tibbetts (right) has joined APA – The Engineered Wood Association, beginning a transition this week to the role of president effective July 1, when the current president, Ed Elias, will retire.

Elias, who has headed the former American Plywood Association for 43 years, announced his retirement last year, but postponed his departure date to steer the organization through the COVID-19 pandemic. “With deep appreciation, the Board thanks Ed Elias for his tireless and steadfast leadership at APA,” says Jim Enright, chair of the APA Board. Enright says Tibbetts was selected by the APA Board of Trustees through a lengthy search process.

Mark Tibbetts

“Mark Tibbetts’ passionate interest in and understanding of the role APA undertakes for its members and the industry clearly set him apart,” says Enright. “The Board endorsed him as the new APA president because of his experience with team building, leadership and communication, and we are excited to add his expertise to our talented team at APA.”

Tibbetts brings more than 15 years’ experience in association and nonprofit program management, environmental policy and business development. He has held leadership and management positions in the Air Conditioning Contractors of America, Tag and Label Manufacturers Institute, Thermostat Recycling Corporation, National Electrical Manufacturers Association and American Public Works Association.

Tibbetts earned bachelor’s and master’s degrees from the University of Maine. He plans to move with his family from Alexandria, VA, to Tacoma, WA, where APA is headquartered.

“For someone who has harbored a lifelong interest in residential construction and building design, I’m thrilled to be taking on this role,” said Tibbetts. “APA has a proud history of supporting members by growing the market for engineered wood products through product promotion, quality assurance and technical support. I look forward to working with the membership, the staff team and our industry partners to build upon this legacy of leadership and exceptional service.”

Elias has served APA and the engineered wood industry for more than 40 years, beginning as an associate scientist in 1977. After 10 years in various roles within the Technical Services Division, he went on to lead the International Marketing and Financial and Administrative Services divisions. He also served as corporate secretary and vice president before being named president in 2013.

“APA is in as strong a financial and strategic position as it has ever been,” Elias said. “I am confident that through Mark and the APA staff, the Board of Trustees and the support of this industry, this Association will continue to grow, capitalizing on a fluid marketplace and becoming more globally relevant every day.”

Tibbetts will become the 12th executive leader in the Association’s almost 90-year history. Boyden, an executive search firm in Ottawa, Ontario, conducted the initial recruitment, screening and vetting of candidates.

Tibbetts and Elias will work together during the three-month transition until Tibbetts assumes the presidency July 1.


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