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PBI Announces Organizational Changes

Charlotte, NC – August 22, 2022


PBI announces several organizational changes within its senior management team, effective immediately. These changes aim to capitalize on the thriving growth opportunities the US-based fiber manufacturer has across world.


Industry boundaries are shifting, as ecosystems and competition across countries, continents and sector lines are becoming more prevalent and new alliances are formed.  Traditional industry boundaries are being challenged and borders redrawn or redefined, at a more rapid pace than we have previously experienced in the fire service.


“These changes call for strategic thinking about what we can do to continue to be at the forefront in innovation and serve our partners and our customers even more efficiently. At PBI, we have the agility to do that. Today, we are introducing our new organizational structure that has one goal in mind: create a customer-centric, unified global ecosystem with a strong regional focus.” says Bill Lawson, President of PBI.

Helmut Zepf

Managing Director - PPE Division. 


In this new role, Helmut will manage all sales, marketing, and technical support activities for PBI fiber sold to PPE markets worldwide.


Helmut came to PBI in 2003, and has increased PBI’s visibility across all markets.  Previous to PBI, Helmut held leading positions in Engineering, Manufacturing, and Sales at a large acrylic fiber manufacturer. 


Helmut will report to Bill Lawson, President.

Bryan Bolden


Vice President of Sales - Americas & North East Asia  


Bryan came to PBI in 2007 and has established a strong track record in all the markets he has been assigned.  Bryan has had increasing responsibility throughout his years in the PBI business and has improved PBI’s relationships with key partners, while driving growth.


Prior to joining PBI, Bryan started his career with a large distributor of Fire Fighting equipment in the Phoenix area.  Reporting to Bryan will be Jingyu Lee, Sales Manager for Asian Markets. 


Bryan will report to Helmut Zepf.

Ian Callaghan 


Vice President of Sales - Europe, Middle East, Africa, & South-East Asia


Ian joined PBI in 2008 and has since contributed substantially with his remarkable people skills and expertise to PBI’s global growth in the key markets he has been responsible for.


Ian came to PBI from a large UK garment manufacturer where he was the Sales Director. In this new role, Ian will be responsible for sales activities, supply chain management and coordination with PBI’s agents, who will report to him in the markets they serve.


Ian will report to Helmut Zepf.

Catalina Ciobanu 


Vice President of Marketing - PPE Division.

Catalina Ciobanu

Catalina joined PBI in 2015 and had an instant impact on PBI’s marketing strategy and support programs to our key partners. Prior to PBI, Catalina was the Global Marketing Leader for a large North American PPE company. Since joining PBI, she was responsible for PBI’s brand positioning, advertising and tradeshow presence, leading the successful implementation of PBI’s new brand identity in 2021. In her new role, Catalina will be focusing her efforts on PBI’s global marketing & communication strategy, to promote PBI’s brand and product portfolio worldwide. She will also be leading business developments efforts and managing key partners in Canada.


Catalina will report to Helmut Zepf.

Diane Hess


Vice President of Research and Development and Technical Support - PPE Division.  


Diane started with PBI in 1992.  Prior to that, Diane worked as an Engineer in several polyester plants. Over her long career at PBI, Diane has had major impacts on the development of new products, quality improvements, customer support and expanding PBI’s presence worldwide. Diane also is a key member of many standards organizations and is regarded as one of the world’s top experts of Personnel Protection equipment (PPE) performance measures.


Diane will maintain her current staff and will report to Helmut Zepf.

Agathe Wedekind


Director of Sales and Marketing - PPE Division.  


Agathe joined PBI in 2011 as a Marketing Assistant.  


In her most recent role as International Sales and Marketing Manager, Agathe has been impressive with her commitment and efficiency, which has led to the growth and strength of PBI’s brand and visibility across all markets. She was also responsible for the implementation of the new brand identity in the International markets. In her new role, Agathe will support PBI’s expanding sales and marketing efforts in key markets. 


Agathe will report to Catalina Ciobanu for marketing activities and to Ian Callaghan for sales activities.

These changes will help deliver PBI’s goal of continually providing top-tier service to its customers, drive growth and execute its strategy more quickly, to deliver the right capabilities to its partners and customers through the industry's most innovative fabric technologies.

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