Obituary: Thomas I. Dolan
Dolan joined A.O. Smith as senior vice president in 1980 after a 30-year career in the home appliance industry. He was responsible for the company’s consumer products division, which included residential and commercial water heaters, as well as the former A.O. Smith Harvestore Products Co. subsidiary. In 1981, he was named head of all major product divisions of the company and the following year was elected president, chief operating officer, and a member of the company’s board of directors.
In July 1984, he was elected chairman and CEO of the company, succeeding Lloyd B. Smith, the great-grandson of the founder of A.O. Smith. Dolan was the second non-Smith family member to lead the company. He served as CEO until 1989 and was chairman of the board until 1992. He remained a member of the board of directors until he retired in 1996.
While in Milwaukee, Dolan was active in a number of community organizations, serving as a director of the Medical College of Milwaukee, a Milwaukee School of Engineering corporation member, a Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce board member, and as a member of the Greater Milwaukee Committee. In 1987, he served as campaign chairman of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee.
He also was a director of the First Wisconsin National Bank (now U.S. Bank), a trustee of Northwestern Mutual Life Insurance Co., a Machinery and Allied Products Institute executive committee member, an International Executive Service Corps council member, a member of the Society of Automotive Engineers, the Business Roundtable, and the Business Council.
Prior to joining A.O. Smith, Dolan spent 30 years with White Consolidated Industries or its predecessor companies. He was a graduate of the University of Michigan with a degree in industrial/mechanical engineering.
Publication date: 02/27/2012