President and CEO, Board Member
Chris Hutter is President and Chief Executive Officer at Ascent. He is also Co-Founder and Manager of UPG Enterprises LLC, a successful high-growth operator of eight premier industrial companies across the metals, manufacturing, distribution, and logistics sectors. Chris founded UPG on the premise that focusing on culture, respect, technology, and growth creates a best-in-class organization. He received a Bachelor of Science in Finance from the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign and an MBA in Finance from Lewis University.
Chief Financial Officer
Aaron Tam brings over 20 years of executive level experience in finance and accounting to his role as CFO at Ascent. Previous to joining Ascent, Aaron was the CFO of Northstar Aerospace, a leading independent manufacturer of components and assemblies to the global aerospace industry, where he served since 2013. At Northstar, he was instrumental in driving the company’s return to profitable growth while leading the financial planning and reporting, accounting, capital markets, treasury, and tax functions.
Prior to Northstar, Aaron served in multiple CFO roles encompassing a broad range of industries. Additionally, he spent more than a decade with FTI Consulting and PWC as a consultant, interim senior executive, or restructuring advisor to a variety of businesses, where he developed a track record of implementing disciplined cost controls, improving liquidity, and working to develop and execute operational improvement plans. Aaron has a Artium Baccalaureus in Economics from The University of Michigan, and a PhD and MA in Corporate Finance, Industrial Organization, and Econometrics from Northwestern University.
Chief Legal Officer
Doug Tackett brings over two decades of legal experience to his role as Chief Legal Officer at Ascent. Most recently, he served as chief legal officer of Support.com, where he oversaw all legal, governance, and compliance functions. Prior to that, Doug spent over seven years as the Global Chief Legal and Compliance Officer and Secretary for Startek where he led a global team of legal and compliance professionals serving a company operating in 13 countries. He also previously held leadership roles at Comdata, Sitel, and HCA. He began his legal career at the national law firm of Baker Donelson. Doug holds a Juris Doctor from the University of Memphis and a Bachelor of Arts from the University of Tennessee.
Executive Vice President, Ascent Chemicals
John Zuppo brings over 20 years of executive leadership experience and an extensive background in the specialty chemicals industry to his role as Executive Vice President of Ascent Chemicals. John was formerly the CEO of DanChem, which Ascent acquired on October 25th, 2021. While at the helm of DanChem, he led an effective turnaround of the business and more than doubled profitability prior to the successful exit. John accomplished this through reorganizing the entire leadership team, investing in engineering and process development capabilities, building a robust sales funnel with a new commercial team that generated long-term sustainable growth, and creating a culture with core pillars of focus on fostering empowerment and accountability throughout the organization. Prior to DanChem, John spent nearly a decade in various leadership roles at Emerald Performance Materials, a leading producer of advanced specialty chemicals. John holds a Master of Business Administration with an emphasis in organizational behavior from the Weatherhead School of Management at Case Western Reserve University. In addition, he also holds a Bachelor of Science in chemical engineering from the University of Akron.
Executive Vice President, Ascent Metals
Tim Lynch brings over 20 years of leadership experience in the steel industry to his role as Executive Vice President of Ascent Metals. Tim most recently held senior positions at the Americas division of Outokumpu, a global leader in the stainless steel market. While at Outokumpu, he was responsible for leading the successful supply chain reorganization for its North American operations to drive significant improvements in product cost and net working capital while managing the most modern stainless-steel assets in North America. Prior to Outokumpu, Tim served as Vice President of operations, optimization, procurement, and special projects at TMS International, an industry leader in outsourced mill services for global steelmakers. Tim holds a Bachelor of Business Administration with an emphasis in marketing from Duquesne University.