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Ex-Lions president Lewand named CEO at Shinola

The Detroit News

Former Detroit Lions president Tom Lewand has been named the new CEO at Shinola, the handcrafted, luxury wristwatch and bike company, officials announced Thursday.

Shinola is headed by Bedrock Manufacturing Co., which said its leader, Steve Bock, has transitioned to become CEO of its sister company, Seattle-based outfitter Filson. Bock will relocated there.

Lewand spent 20 years with the Lions. He was fired in November. Before joining the Lions, Lewand, who has three degrees from the University of Michigan, worked as a lawyer, including a summer at the White House.

With Lewand leading Shinola, president Jacques Panis reports to both him and founder Tom Kartsotis while working “to expand his reach toward some exciting new initiatives which are being explored,” officials said in a statement Thursday.

Meanwhile, Christopher Hull has been promoted to chief merchant and will partner with creative director Daniel Caudill, according to Bedrock.

“Bringing Tom Lewand onto the team is enabling us to expand the reach of Jacques Panis into some interesting new initiatives that we are pursuing,” Kartsotis said in a statement.

Several other Shinola promotions also were announced Thursday: Shannon Washburn to vice president of watch product development; Kara Berg, vice president of sales; Whitney Delgado, vice president, design; Trish O’Callaghan, vice president, communications.

Shinola — named after the all-American shoe polish that gained popularity during World War II — moved into Detroit in 2013 when it opened headquarters in the Taubman Center at the College for Creative Studies. The flagship store is located at 441 W. Canfield in the Willys Overland Building; Shinola bicycles are assembled there.

The watch and bike maker that hails itself as “Where American is made” now has locations across the globe, including London, Paris, Miami, New York, Chicago and Washington, D.C., according to the company’s website.

In addition to the retail stores, Shinola has partnered with Mosey’s Midtown Detroit Inc. to create a dog park at the corner of Cass and Canfield, as well as a green alley project. The company has also given four 13-foot-tall clocks as gifts to the city, including one at the Lion’s home of Ford Field.

Company officials have said Detroit was selected over dozens of locations nationwide to tap into the city’s manufacturing roots.