ILMA marks 75th year with successive female presidents
Catharine Golden (left) and Ann Ball (right)

ILMA marks 75th year with successive female presidents

Catharine T. Golden, CEO of Etna Products, Inc., based in Chagrin Falls, Ohio, U.S.A., assumed the role of president of the Independent Lubricant Manufacturers Association (ILMA), on October 10, 2023. This transition, which took place during the 2023 ILMA Annual Meeting in Palm Desert, California, U.S.A., is noteworthy as it marks the first time the presidency has been passed from one woman to another in the association’s 75th anniversary year.

Golden, who succeeds Ann Ball, regulatory affairs manager for Qualichem Inc., is the seventh woman to hold the position since Leslie Jones of Hangsterfer’s Laboratories first broke the gender barrier in 1999. 

“Women are still underrepresented in the lubricants industry, but we’re seeing positive changes. It’s crucial for ILMA to attract diverse talent, including younger generations, to our field,” Golden said.

Etna Products, Inc., a fourth-generation family-owned business established in 1943, is recognised as a National Women’s Business Enterprise. The company specialises in producing metal forming lubricants, drawing and stamping lubricants, rust preventatives, and various machining fluids.

Golden’s presidency will focus on nurturing the next generation of talent in the lubricants industry. Initiatives like ILMA’s internship toolkit, which offers best practices for hiring interns, are part of this effort. 

“Internships are an excellent way to build networks and attract young professionals to our industry,” Golden said.

Golden’s journey in the lubricants industry began in 2003 as a part-time administrative assistant at Etna. She worked through various roles before becoming the majority owner and CEO in 2020 and was elected to ILMA’s board of directors in 2015. 

“For small, independent manufacturers, ILMA is an invaluable resource. I want people to engage with it fully,” she said.

ILMA CEO Holly Alfano praised Golden’s leadership. “Catharine’s experience in a family business and her people-focused approach provide deep insights into our members’ needs. I’m excited to collaborate with her this year,” Alfano said.

Founded in 1948, ILMA serves as the principal voice for the lubricant industry before the U.S. Congress, federal regulatory agencies, and other industry groups. The association is committed to integrity and quality in lubricant manufacturing and marketing, as outlined in its enforceable Code of Ethics.