AISI Appoints Kavanagh President of Steel Market Development Institute

Washington, D.C.– The American Iron and Steel Institute (AISI) today announced the appointment of Lawrence W. Kavanagh, as president of the Steel Market Development Institute (SMDI), a business unit of AISI.   Currently AISI Vice President of Environment and Technology, Kavanagh will assume his new responsibilities on March 1.

Kavanagh succeeds current SMDI President David C. Jeanes, who has announced his retirement after a distinguished 34-year career with AISI, during which he was responsible for developing and implementing an industry-wide strategic plan to advance the competitive use of North American steel in the marketplace. 

In announcing Kavanagh’s appointment, AISI President and CEO Thomas J. Gibson said “Larry brings a broad range of experience in and understanding of steelmaking technologies, competitive strategies to advance steel in the marketplace, and public policy advocacy, all of which will provide a solid foundation for him to lead AISI’s market development program.”

“AISI’s market development program has been a cornerstone of the Institute’s success in engaging customers in pro-competitive collaboration to deliver steel-intensive solutions to the marketplace,” said James L. Wainscott, Chairman, President and CEO of AK Steel who is serving as AISI’s Chairman.   “Larry’s strong advocacy and management skills, along with his experience working collaboratively with steel customers, will enable him to build on the solid foundation that David Jeanes and the SMDI team have established over the years.”

“David Jeanes is a consummate professional, who has led AISI’s market development efforts for two decades by creating a dynamic and innovative marketing model and positioning steel as the material of choice,” John P. Surma, SMDI Chairman, and Chairman and CEO of United States Steel Corporation, said. “Larry will have big shoes to fill and we’re confident he will maintain the SMDI’s focus on innovation and growth with his strong leadership skills and unique background in research, technology and policy development.”

Most recently in his career, Kavanagh has been responsible for AISI’s technology, environment and climate change policy and programs.  In the technology area, these include how steel is made today, how steel will be made in the future and how steel competes with other materials.  That includes oversight of   collaborative research programs among steelmakers, suppliers, universities and labs designed to improve existing steelmaking processes and develop new ones, with focus on reducing or eliminating CO2 emissions.

Kavanagh has also been responsible for leading AISI’s environmental policy activities, which include a wide range of regulatory matters as well as the Institute’s domestic and international climate change initiatives and negotiations, such as the Asia Pacific Partnership.
Prior to joining AISI in 1991, Kavanagh was General Manager, Engineering, for Davy International’s Automation Services Division (currently known as Kvaerner and Voest-Alpine).   In this capacity, Kavanagh and his team were responsible for all phases of steel and aluminum industry capital project execution, estimating, sales support, specification, design engineering, project management, field start-up and customer acceptance for Davy’s steel and aluminum equipment installations around the world.

Mr. Kavanagh is a graduate of the University of Notre Dame with a bachelor of science in electrical engineering and of the mini MBA program at George Mason University.  He is an active/former board member of various community service and research organizations.

AISI serves as the voice of the North American steel industry in the public policy arena and advances the case for steel in the marketplace as the material of choice.  AISI also plays a lead role in the development and application of new steels and steelmaking technology.    AISI is comprised of 24 member companies, including integrated and electric furnace steelmakers, and 138 associate and affiliate members who are suppliers to or customers of the steel industry.  AISI's member companies represent over 75 percent of both U.S. and North American steel capacity.  For more news about steel and its applications, view AISI’s Web site at