News Release
RPM International Mourns the Passing of Former Chairman and CEO Thomas C. Sullivan

MEDINA, Ohio--(BUSINESS WIRE)-- RPM International Inc. (NYSE: RPM) today announced with profound sadness that Thomas C. Sullivan, former chairman and CEO of RPM, passed away peacefully on November 30, 2020, in Ohio. He was 83 years old.

This press release features multimedia. View the full release here:

Thomas C. Sullivan, Sr. (Photo: Business Wire)

Thomas C. Sullivan, Sr. (Photo: Business Wire)

Mr. Sullivan joined RPM, then known as Republic Powdered Metals, in 1961 as a division sales manager before assuming leadership of the company in 1971 following the sudden death of his father and RPM founder, Frank C. Sullivan. Mr. Sullivan’s history with the firm included election to vice president in 1967, assuming the role of executive vice president in 1969, and being elected CEO and chairman of the board in 1971. He stepped down as CEO in 2002, and in October 2008, he retired after 37 years of serving as chairman, but continued to serve as chairman emeritus until 2016. Under his leadership, RPM grew to more than $2 billion in sales in 2002 through a combination of internal growth and acquisitions, achieving record sales every year and record net income in nearly every year as well.

Frank C. Sullivan, chairman and CEO of RPM, said, “It is with a heavy heart that we share the news of Tom’s passing. He was an exceptional and inspirational figure, and a wonderful father. Tom shaped RPM’s corporate culture, established its core operating principles and leaves an unmatched legacy of success, mentorship and guidance that is carried on by our current management team. His dedication, passion and entrepreneurial spirit will be dearly missed.”

A celebration of Tom’s life will be held in Cleveland, Ohio, on July 17, 2021. Due to Covid-19 restrictions, a private funeral mass will be live streamed at 11 a.m. ET on Saturday December 5, 2020.

About RPM

RPM International Inc. owns subsidiaries that are world leaders in specialty coatings, sealants, building materials and related services. The company operates across four reportable segments: Consumer Group, Construction Products Group, Performance Coatings Group and Specialty Products Group. RPM has a diverse portfolio with hundreds of market-leading brands, including Rust-Oleum, DAP, Zinsser, Varathane, Day-Glo, Legend Brands, Stonhard, Carboline, Tremco and Dryvit. From homes and workplaces, to infrastructure and precious landmarks, RPM’s brands are trusted by consumers and professionals alike to help build a better world. The company employs approximately 14,600 individuals worldwide. The company employs approximately 14,600 individuals worldwide. Visit to learn more.

For more information, contact Russell L. Gordon, vice president and chief financial officer, at 330-273-5090 or

Russell L. Gordon, vice president and chief financial officer, at 330-273-5090 or

Source: RPM International Inc.

Leading Brands You Know & Trust
RPM products with the words our brands pay dividends.

rpm logo
RPM Logo
2628 Pearl Road, Medina, OH 44256 | 330-273-5090 |

© RPM International Inc.

© RPM International Inc.