Keystone Automotive Industries Inc. announced that Richard L. Keister was formally elected president and chief executive officer at the company’s annual board meeting held last week. He succeeds the retiring Charles J. Hogarty who remains with the company as a consultant for the next two years, as previously announced. Keister (58), most recently served as president of Delco Remy International’s Aftermarket Group — joining that company in 1997 following Delco Remy’s acquisition of World Wide Automotive. In one of his first actions, Keister annouced the appointment of Barnett Gershen to the newly created position of vice president of organizational development. In addition to the appointment of Gershen, Keister indicated that the company intends to create several other positions, including: a vice president of supply chain management to improve its inventory management, purchasing and logistics; a project management director and a senior financial analyst. Keister was co-founder of the predecessor company to World Wide Automotive, serving from 1976 as president and chief executive officer of the start-up venture. The company initially focused on the remanufacturing of rotating electrics, selling to local auto repair shops. By 1984, that company had 3,000 customers in the mid-Atlantic region. Keister expanded operations under the name World Wide Automotive in the mid ’80s with a focus on serving the high-growth market of imported vehicles — selling to large retailers, major warehouse distributors and, in some cases, direct competitors. The company also launched remanufacturing operations and joint ventures in several overseas locations, including Hong Kong, Malaysia and China. Delco Remy acquired the business in 1997.