Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce: A. O. Smith CEO Paul Jones named chair of Tri State Alliance for Regional Development

Chicago, IL—The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce announced today that Paul W. Jones, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of A. O. Smith Corporation in Milwaukee, has been named Wisconsin Chair of the new Tri State Alliance for Regional Development. Jones is the third and final Chairman to be confirmed, joining Illinois Chair Michael M. Mullen, Co-founder of Centerpoint Properties, and Indiana Chair Jim L. Stanley, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer for Northern Indiana Public Service Company.

The Tri State Alliance for Regional Development was created to implement recommendations provided by The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD). The OECD consists of 40 countries that represent 80 percent of world trade and investment, playing a pivotal role in addressing challenges facing the global economy.

“I am pleased and honored to represent Wisconsin as part of the Alliance for Regional Development,” Jones said. “The focus of the OECD’s review, which includes workforce development, innovation, logistics, and ‘green’ initiatives, fits well with the priorities of our state as well as those of A. O. Smith. I am enthusiastic about working with Mike Mullen and Jim Stanley to implement the OECD recommendations, execute the strategy, and enhance the competitive position of the Tri State area.”

“Paul Jones’ selection will help us explore the regional relationship and opportunities on economic development,” said Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation Vice President of Business & Industry Development Lee Swindall.

“Paul Jones is a thoughtful and effective executive,” Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett said. “Paul is a respected CEO of a global company, and he is a prominent leader in our region’s philanthropic and business development efforts. He is ideally suited to take on a leadership role in the Tri State Alliance.”

“The three Chairmen and strategic funding partners will begin meeting this month to discuss goals and initiatives for the region. Insights gained from the OECD Review will be instrumental in developing our agenda, maximizing assets and overcoming obstacles as a region.” stated Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce Senior Vice President Kelly O’Brien.

The Alliance is a neutral platform to bring together the leaders from government, academia and the private sector and is proud to have the support of the U.S. Department of Commerce Economic Development Administration, Central Area Committee, Chicago Community Trust, City of Kenosha, County of Kenosha, Illinois Department of Commerce and Economic Opportunity, Kenosha Area Business Alliance, Milwaukee 7, Northern Indiana Public Service Company (NIPSCO), Northwest Indiana Forum, Northwest Indiana Regional Development Authority, Purdue University, Racine County Economic Development Corporation, University of Illinois, University of Wisconsin, Wisconsin Economic Development Corporation and many others.

About Paul W. Jones
Paul W. Jones is the Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of A. O. Smith Corporation, a leading global supplier of water heaters and boilers for residential, commercial, and industrial applications and water treatment products. The company, with 2011 sales of $1.7 billion, employs approximately 10,500 people and has operations in the United States, Canada, Mexico, England, the Netherlands, India, and China. Jones joined A. O. Smith in January 2004 as President and Chief Operating Officer, responsible for all operations worldwide. He was elected to the Board of Directors in December 2004.

Prior to joining A. O. Smith, Jones served as Chairman and Chief Executive Officer of US Can Company, Inc., of Lombard, Ill., a leading provider of containers for personal care, household, paint, and industrial products, from 1998 until 2002. From 1989 until 1998, he was President and Chief Executive Officer of Greenfield Industries, Inc., of Augusta, Ga., a manufacturer of cutting tools and other material-removal products. Paul began his career in 1971 with General Electric Company, holding positions in engineering, manufacturing, materials, and general management.

In addition to the A. O. Smith board, Jones is a member of the Federal-Signal Corporation and the Integrys Energy Corporation Boards of Directors. He also is a member of the Business Roundtable, the U.S. Chamber of Commerce, the National Association of Manufacturers (NAM), and serves on the Executive Committee of the Board of Trustees of MAPI. He was a founder of the Milwaukee Water Council and currently serves as Co-Chairman of the organization.

About the Tri State Alliance for Regional Development
The Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce commissioned The Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development (OECD) to conduct a groundbreaking economic analysis of the Tri State Chicago Metropolitan Region of Illinois, Indiana, and Wisconsin. Subsequently, the Tri State Alliance for Regional Development was launched to create and execute an implementation plan for the OECD’s recommendations. For more information and to download the full report, visit

For More Information, Contact:
Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
Kelly O’Brien, Senior Vice President for Economic Development

Phone: 708.772.5199 Email: [email protected]

About the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce
The primary role of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce is to make Chicagoland the most business-friendly region in America by enhancing our members’ success through aggressive programs in advocacy, member benefits and services, and actionable information. Serving as “The Voice of Business” since 1904, the Chamber leads aggressive public policy and business growth initiatives and we create meaningful events and programs to inform, engage, and connect our members to each other and the community. Visit