Michael Hochschwender is the President and CEO of The Smithers Group. Since becoming CEO in 1996, his leadership and entrepreneurial approach have driven technology diversification, geographical expansion, and rapid business growth. Today, Smithers serves a global client base from thirteen facilities spread across North America, Europe and Asia. Mr. Hochschwender has been responsible for five acquisitions and two start-ups all funded by operations.
A graduate of Tulane University and the Wharton School of Business, Mr. Hochschwender holds a Bachelor of Science in Biology and Environmental Studies and a Masters of Business Administration, with an emphasis on operations, finance and entrepreneurial management.
Immediately following his undergraduate program, Mr. Hochschwender spent five years in the U.S. Navy as a platoon commander for SEAL Team One in Coronado, California. After starting his business career, he continued serving in the United States Navy Reserve until 2008.
Mr. Hochschwender joined Smithers in 1988 as a management consultant, responsible for market research for the North American tire industry. Later he was named General Manager of the Akron laboratory operations, with a scope of services covering the materials testing and analysis of rubber, plastics and tires.
After obtaining his MBA in 1992, Mr. Hochschwender was promoted to Vice President of Management Consulting at Smithers and President of Smithers Quality Assessments, Inc., an accredited registrar for quality systems certification.
In May 1994, Mr. Hochschwender was appointed Vice President of Smithers' Akron operations. While maintaining his management consulting and quality assessments responsibilities, his new duties expanded to include overseeing the materials testing laboratories and technical consulting, focusing on product development, failure analysis and accident reconstruction for clients in the tire and rubber industries.
Mr. Hochschwender is active in local health, civic and educational organizations. He currently serves or has served on the boards of Akron General Medical Center, Old Trail School, FirstMerit Corp., University of Akron Foundation, Ohio Foundation of Independent Colleges, Morgan Foundation, and The American Council of Independent Laboratories.