Jim Fitterling is the Chair and Chief Executive Officer of Dow, a global materials science company with 2022 sales of $57 billion.
He has played a key role in the Company’s transformation, from lower-margin, commodity businesses to one more deeply focused on higher-growth, consumer demand-driven markets that value innovation – with the goal of creating the most innovative, customer-centric, inclusive and sustainable materials science company in the world.
Fitterling was named chief executive officer-elect of Dow in March 2018, prior to becoming CEO in July 2018. He was elected board chair in April 2020. Before becoming CEO, he served as president and chief operating officer of Dow. From September 2017 through March 2019, he also served as chief operating officer for the Materials Science Division of DowDuPont, an $86 billion holding company comprised of The Dow Chemical Company and DuPont, created with the intent to form independent, publicly traded companies in materials science, agriculture and specialty products sectors. On April 1, 2019, Dow separated from DowDuPont.
Fitterling’s 39-year career at Dow began in 1984, two weeks after graduating from University of Missouri – Columbia with a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. Over his first decade with the company, he held a variety of sales, marketing and supply chain positions in the U.S. In 1994, he moved to Asia to serve as commercial director for Dow’s liquid separations business in the region. He returned to the U.S. in 1998, taking over the liquid separations business globally and becoming president and CEO of FilmTec Corporation, a wholly owned subsidiary of the company. In 2000, he returned to Asia to serve as general manager for Dow Thailand and managing director for the SCG-Dow group of joint venture companies. Over the next four years, he was named CEO of The OPTIMAL Group, an affiliate of Malaysia’s state-owned oil corporation and Dow, and added responsibility for Dow Southeast Asia and Australia regions. In 2006, Fitterling repatriated to the U.S. and was named business vice president for Dow’s polyethylene envelope. Before being named president and chief operating officer in 2016, he held a variety of senior leadership roles in corporate development and business operations.
At his direction, in January 2019, Dow became a founding member of the Alliance to End Plastic Waste (AEPW), an initiative to accelerate efforts to drive innovation, provide much-needed resources, and take decisive action to put an end to plastic waste in the environment.