Craig T. Bouchard
Founder & Chairman of the Board
Craig is a Founder and Executive Chairman of Ecolution kWh, LLC. Ecolution technology converts kinetic energy in moving vehicles into an electric micro-grid, in the process making a train station the e-mobility center of its town. The company’s patented intellectual property enables truck/trailers, trains, and subway cars to become a power plant transporting energy to where it is most needed.
Co-Chairman of the Board, The Space Railway Corporation, (www.spacerailway.com). The Space Railway will pave the way for sending cargo into space in larger amounts and at a vastly lesser cost than currently feasible, and bringing material amounts of cargo back on the same space ships.
Chairman of the Board, The Run Productions, LLC
Craig is a New York Times Best Selling author. “The Caterpillar Way. Lessons in Leadership, Growth and Shareholder Value” was released in October of 2013, reaching #1 on the Barnes & Noble Best Seller List, and #8 on the New York Times Best Seller list in the business category. James V. Koch was once again Craig’s co-author. (McGraw Hill.)
Craig founded three companies that achieved roughly $1 billion of revenue within 18 months. His companies completed 12 acquisitions of metals companies and he has won three hostile proxy contests. Craig was a finalist for the prestigious Platts/S&P “CEO of the Year” award in the global metals industries for the year 2018.
In 2004, Craig co-founded Esmark Inc., a company that acquired nine steel companies, including the celebrated hostile takeover of Wheeling Pittsburgh Corporation on its way to becoming the fourth largest American steel company. Craig innovated the first hostile reverse tender merger in Wall Street history in 2007.
Esmark revenues grew from $4 million in 2003 to $3.5 billion in 2008. The company was sold in 2008 for an enterprise value of $1.25 billion. That year, Esmark (ESMK) became the highest appreciating stock on either the NASDAQ or NYSE (for the full year). The story is chronicled in “America For Sale, How the Foreign Pack Circled and Devoured Esmark.” Copyright 2009 Craig T. Bouchard and James V. Koch, (ABC-CLIO.)
Craig founded Real Industry, Inc., (then called Signature Group Holdings) in June 2013 after leading a proxy battle to remove the company’s board. This was Craig’s third successful hostile proxy on Wall Street. The company grew from $40 million of annual revenue in 2013 to roughly $1.3 billion and joined the NASDAQ under Craig’s stewardship.
Craig’s early career was in banking. He became a Senior Vice President at the First National Bank of Chicago, (now JPM/Chase). His career there spanned 19 years. In the 150-year history of the bank, Craig was the 3rd youngest individual to rise to the level of Senior Vice President.
In 1985, the bank moved Craig to Hong Kong to become the Head of Commercial Banking for Hong Kong and China. During that time Craig headed the 100 bank
unsecured creditors committee for the Overseas Orient (OOCL) bankruptcy, the largest bankruptcy in Asian history at that time.
In 1992, Craig returned to Tokyo as the Manager of the Tokyo Trading Room, Area Head of Asia Pacific and Managing Director of CCI Finance LTD, a merchant bank in Beijing, China. CCI Finance was a joint venture between the Bank of China, the Industrial Bank of Japan, and First Chicago.
Craig finished his career at First Chicago as The Global Head of Derivative Trading, Head of Fixed Income Sales, and Head of Quantitative Research until 1998.
As a hobby, Craig’s “The Adventures of Ai” was one of the world’s most popular children’s book projects in 2014. The book was translated into Japanese, Mandarin, Spanish, and Arabic, with the accompanying Adventures of Ai video game, achieving over 300,000 downloads globally on Apple iTunes, Google Play, and Samsung. The project benefited 18 children charities around the world.
Craig holds a bachelor’s degree from Illinois State University (1975), a master’s degree in Economics from Illinois State University (1977), an Honorary Doctor of Science from Illinois State University (2018), and an MBA from the University of Chicago (1981). Craig has been a member of the Board of Trustees of Boston University and the Foundation of the University of Montana. He is currently a member of the leadership board of the Department
of Athletics, Duke University. Craig is an alumnus of Leadership Greater Chicago and was a finalist for the Ernst & Young Entrepreneur of the Year award (Illinois) in 2005.
Craig was elected to the Hall of Fame of the Illinois State University College of Arts and Sciences in 2008. He is a member of the Hall of Fame of Hinsdale Central Township High School. Craig holds the United States Patent 4,212,168, Power Producing Dry-Type Cooling Systems.
He is married to Melissa N. Bouchard and is the proud father of six children.