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Former CEO of Sherwin-Williams dies at 85

Posted at 7:52 PM, Oct 28, 2019

CLEVELAND — The former CEO of Sherwin-Williams has died.

John Breen, known as Jack, joined Sherwin-Williams in 1979 as the CEO.

“On behalf of the Board of Directors and the entire Sherwin-Williams family worldwide, we extend our deepest condolences to Jack’s wife, Mary Jane, and the Breen family. Jack was a tremendous leader and well respected across the organization, as well as by customers, shareholders and community leaders,” said John G. Morikis, Sherwin-Williams Chairman and Chief Executive Officer. “Jack is credited with saving the Company from the many difficult financial challenges he inherited after being named only the seventh CEO in Sherwin-Williams history. He was instrumental in returning the Company back to its roots of providing unmatched products and services to customers. Under his leadership, he led a strategic restructuring that focused on selling products through a revitalized platform of company-operated stores and expanding into other distribution channels, both of which resulted in Sherwin-Williams becoming an industry leader. Jack also implemented the Sherwin-Williams Management Training Program, which strengthened leadership development and sustained performance that continues today. Jack was a great mentor and friend to many, and he was an inspiration to all.”

Breen retired as CEO in 1999 and remained on the Board of Directors until April 2005.

He was 85 years old.