In May, Palmer Holland established the Industrial Specialties and Consumer & Life Sciences segments, increasing market focus to support the different needs of these two strong sources of growth and transformation. These additional organizational changes, specific to the Industrial Specialties segment, demonstrate Palmer Holland’s commitment to continued investment and growth in its industrial business and to retaining and promoting top talent in the distribution industry.

With a commitment to creating sustainable and profitable growth for principals, customers, and employee-owners, Palmer Holland has appointed John Outcalt as business director of Coatings, Adhesives, Sealants, and Elastomers (CASE), Dave Ruggieri as principal management director of CASE, John Battaglia as business director of Lubricants, and Tony Denton as senior business director of Plastics.

Outcalt started his career in the coatings industry at Sherwin-Williams before joining Palmer Holland in 2011 as an account manager. Building upon his foundation in sales, he moved into business management before transitioning to commercial leadership, where he has spent over seven years managing teams in both sales and business management for CASE, in addition to serving on the Board of Directors in support of Palmer Holland’s ESOP (Employee Stock Ownership Plan) structure. Outcalt’s intimate knowledge of the CASE market puts him in a position to continue providing the leadership skills and sales acumen that have defined his career at Palmer Holland.

With nearly 30 years of chemical industry and business development experience, Ruggieri has been an essential part of the Palmer Holland organization. He served as the central regional sales manager for nine years before transitioning to his most recent role as business manager for CASE in 2019. Ruggieri will assume a formal leadership role with the Business Management Team.

Tony Denton has been promoted to senior business director of Plastics. He joined Palmer Holland in 2009 as an account manager in the Central Region before accepting an enterprise account manager role in 2013 to help pioneer what is now the CASE Team’s Key Account Program. 

“The recent leadership promotions in our organization represent our ongoing commitment to recognizing and developing top talent within the specialty chemical industry,” said Ron Zmich, senior vice president of Industrial Specialties. “Each employee-owner has demonstrated exceptional leadership skills, industry knowledge, and dedication to growing Palmer Holland’s and our principal partners’ reach, and we’re lucky to have them.”

July 1, 2023, Eric Kielts retired from his position as business director of Lubricants. With an extensive career in the industrial lubricant and metalworking manufacturing industry, his technical knowledge, drive, and commitment to Palmer Holland have been instrumental to the growth of the Lubricant vertical. Kielts will remain at Palmer Holland, supporting the Lubricant Team in a limited capacity.

John Battaglia will succeed Kielts as business director of Lubricants. Battaglia has proven success in leadership in the company’s sales and principal management sides while consistently providing mentoring and coaching for cross-functional teammates throughout the organization. 

To learn more, visit