John Ofenloch to lead AE Shoals Manufacturing & Technology Center

AE Industrial Partners LP acquired the facility from the RSA in January

AE Industrial Partners LP, a private equity firm, has appointed John Ofenloch president of the AE Shoals Manufacturing & Technology Center.

AE Industrial Partners acquired the center from the Retirement Systems of Alabama in January. The building, in Cherokee, sits on 638 acres and contains 2.27 million square feet of industrial-zoned manufacturing capacity. AE Industrial plans to market the space as a manufacturing and technology center focused on national security, aerospace and industrial services. When it purchased the building from RSA, AE Industrial said it would be partnering with the Poarch Band of Creek Indians to work with federal customers.

“We extend our gratitude to our partners at the RSA and the Poarch Band of Creek Indians for their exceptional collaboration. Together, we’ve worked hand-in-hand to establish the center as the premier facility for defense, aerospace and industrial innovators in the region,” said Chris Emerson, senior partner at AE Industrial.

John Ofenloch named president of AE Shoals Manufacturing & Technology Center.

Previous tenants of the building include National Steel Car, Navistar and, most recently, FreightCar America.

“We are excited to leverage John’s decades of experience and regional expertise to accelerate our growth as we prepare to welcome our first tenants in the coming months,” said Emerson.

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Ofenloch has more than 30 years of experience across various industries, including telecommunications, technology and integrated manufacturing. A native of Huntsville, Ofenloch has a bachelor’s degree from Auburn University and an MBA from Southern Methodist University.

 “Growing up in Huntsville, I got to watch my father work on the Apollo missions and space related initiatives, and now I feel as if I’ve come full circle, helping foster the growth of companies that will drive the next generation of national security and aerospace leadership,” said Ofenloch.

Rounding out the management team at the center will be Mike Lanier as vice president of development and Nick Willis as facility manager.

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