Company News

Southern Devall Group CEO Ed Grimm Retires

The Southern Devall Group, an affiliate of CC Industries and a holding company for the combined businesses of Southern Towing and Devall Towing, has announced the retirement of CEO Ed Grimm.

Grimm, a former officer in the U.S. Coast Guard and a Coast Guard reservist who also spent significant time with Houston Marine Services and Martin Marine, had served as CEO of Southern Towing for more than six years. He led Southern Company through its 2019 acquisition by CC Industries, a Chicago-based holding company for the Crown family’s privately held companies, and through the acquisition of Devall Towing earlier this year.

“We are grateful for the leadership and years of service from Ed Grimm, especially through our acquisitions of Southern Towing in 2019 and Devall Towing in 2021,” said Bill Crown, president and CEO of CC Industries. “We wish Ed all the best as he looks to spend more time with his family. We have the utmost confidence in Chris Sullivan, Stephen Kelley, Kenny Devall and their management teams to continue supporting and growing The Southern Devall Group.”

With Grimm’s retirement, Kelley is assuming the role of chief operating officer of Southern Towing. Conway will remain vice president of sales and marketing of Southern Towing, and Devall will continue serving as chief operating officer of Devall Towing. Sullivan, who serves in CC Industries’ Corporate Development Group and as a board member of The Southern Devall Group, has assumed the role of interim CEO of The Southern Devall Group.

“We look forward to continuing to provide customers integrated marine transportation solutions through Devall Towing and Southern Towing’s capabilities on the Gulf Intracoastal and U.S. inland waterways,” Sullivan said.

Southern Towing, founded in 1958 and headquartered in Memphis, Tenn., operates a fleet of 27 towboats and 78 barges, serving customers in agriculture and industrial markets. Devall Towing, which operates a fleet of 36 towboats and 131 liquid tank barges, transports specialty chemicals along the Gulf Intracoastal Waterway and the Lower Mississippi River. The company also offers fleeting locations in Lake Charles, La., and Victoria, Texas, with a combined capacity of up to 175 barges. Devall Diesel Services offers marine diesel sales and service in Louisiana and Texas. The company, founded in 1952, is headquartered in Sulphur, La.

Other CC Industries companies include GILLIG, Great Dane Trailers, J.L. Clark, Miracapo Pizza Company, Provisur Technologies, Riverside Rail, Selig and Trail King Industries. The original Crown family business dates to 1919, when Henry Crown and his brothers started Material Service Corporation.