Chief Executive Officer, A.O. Smith
Ajita Rajendra was named President and Chief Executive Officer of A. O. Smith Corporation on January 1, 2013, the ninth CEO in the company’s history. His primary responsibilities include strategy development and implementation, profitability, and shareholder returns. Prior to that, he was President and Chief Operating Officer, responsible for A. O. Smith’s water heater operations in North America, China, Europe, and India as well as the company’s water purification business in China and the Lochinvar global boiler business.
Ajita joined A. O. Smith as President of Water Products Company in January 2005 and was named an Executive Vice President of the Corporation in 2006. Prior to joining A. O. Smith, he was Senior Vice President of the Industrial Products Group of Kennametal Inc., Latrobe, Pa., a manufacturer of cutting tools used in aerospace, automotive, and other industrial applications.
Ajita began his career in 1976 with Corning Incorporated, Corning, N.Y., holding a wide range of financial and executive management positions including Director of the company’s Retail Operations, Business Director of the Corning Cookware division, and President of the Revere Ware Corporation.
Ajita earned a bachelor of science degree in chemical engineering from the Indian Institute of Technology, Delhi, India, and an MBA from Carnegie-Mellon University, Pittsburgh, Pa. Ajita is a director of Donaldson Company Inc.