Ronald Ashburn is the first executive director of the Association for Iron & Steel Technology (AIST), having served in that capacity since the organization’s founding in January 2004. In his role as executive director, Ashburn is responsible for oversight of business operations and strategic planning initiatives for AIST and the AIST Foundation. He formerly served as the eighth managing director for the Association of Iron and Steel Engineers from 2002 until its merger with the Iron & Steel Society, which led to the formation of AIST. Prior to joining AISE, he worked 16 years with Mannesmann Demag, a global builder of steel plants, first joining them in 1986 as a mechanical engineer in their Continuous Casting Division. In 1996, Ashburn was appointed director of technology for steelmaking and casting, and in 1997 he became vice president — casting and hot rolling. In 1999, SMS and Mannesmann Demag merged to form SMS Demag, where he served as vice president — operations for their Steelmaking and Casting Division in Pittsburgh, Pa., USA. Ashburn received his B.S. degree in mechanical engineering from the University of Pittsburgh (1987) and participated in metallurgical process training at University of British Columbia (1987) and global business management training at the University of Virginia (1998). He served on the board of directors for Visit Pittsburgh and was a member of its executive committee.