BendPak Announces Senior Leadership Changes


SANTA PAULA, CA (July 26, 2022) —Since 1965 Don Henthorn has been leading BendPak into becoming the global icon it is today. Effective August 3rd, Don Henthorn will be stepping down as President and CEO, taking on a more limited role in the day-to-day operations as Chairman Emeritus. Jeff Kritzer, who has been an integral part of the company for over 40 years, will be succeeding Henthorn as President and CEO. At the same time, Rudy Diaz will be stepping up from Vice President of Information Technology to Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer (COO). Jim Fornear will be moving from Financial Controller to Chief Financial Officer (CFO). Javier Arias will continue in the critical role of Vice President of Operations.

Henthorn will remain active in an advisory capacity to ensure a seamless transition of leadership. His unrivaled experience and wisdom will make him an invaluable asset as he continues to mentor all of us at BendPak.

“All of us at BendPak are grateful for Don’s continued service to the company and his solid contributions to our success. We look forward to his ongoing guidance and direction during this transitionary period,” Kritzer said. “Since 1965, his leadership, mentoring style, and embodiment of our company values and traditions have helped establish our winning culture. We have some very big shoes to fill, but through his ongoing mentorship and shaping of our company’s work ethic and culture, we believe our market dominance will continue.”

Rudy Diaz joined BendPak back in June of 2011 as Vice President of Information Technology. Now he will be assuming the role as Executive Vice President and COO where he’ll continue to enhance information technologies such as cloud computing and big data analytics which will ultimately help streamline processes and increase productivity, while improving cybersecurity protections and security upgrades to reduce corporate risk.
Jim Fornear has been serving as financial controller since he joined BendPak in November 2019. As CFO, he will be instrumental in managing the company’s budgeting and forecasting processes, financial strategies, profitability, and risk management.

Although titles are changing, BendPak will continue to deliver superior equipment as well as our brand promise to better serve our customers worldwide.


Don Henthorn (right) president and founder of BendPak, Inc., is moving into an advisory capacity as chairman emeritus while Jeff Kritzer (left), a 40-year veteran of the global equipment manufacturer, is promoted to president and CEO effective Aug. 3, 2022.

Don Henthorn founded BendPak, Inc. in 1965 and has grown the company into a global manufacturer and marketer of vehicle service equipment and specialty consumer products.


Jeff Kritzer is promoted from executive vice president to president and CEO of BendPak, Inc., effective Aug. 3, 2022.


As part of a broad leadership transition at leading equipment manufacturer BendPak, Inc., Rudy Diaz is promoted from vice president of information technology to executive vice president and chief operating officer (COO), effective Aug. 3, 2022.


Jim Fornear is promoted from financial controller to chief financial officer (CFO) of vehicle service equipment leader BendPak, Inc., effective Aug. 3, 2022.


As BendPak, Inc. reorganizes its executive leadership team, Javier Arias provides continuity in the critical role of vice president of operations for the global equipment manufacturer.

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