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Gerald Freeman President of Stone Forest Industries likes to spend time at field operations
Gerald Freeman likes to start his day early, driving to work before the rush-hour mob and playing racquetball before arriving at his Michigan Avenue office in the Chicago Loop.
Although that may be a familiar routine after nearly 20 years with Stone Container Corp., more often Freeman, 52, dons boots and Levi's to spend the day in places like Eagar and Snowflake. And that duty suits him just fine.
"The action is all out in the field - the sawmills, the paper mills," he says. As senior vice president and general manager of Stone's Forest Products Division and president and chief operating officer of Stone Forest Industries, Freeman oversees mills, wood procurement and other operations that dot the map from Florida to Oregon.
Arizona now represents about $150 million in sales for the giant paper and packaging corporation, which wrapped up 1989 with sales of about $4.7 billion. Most of the Arizona operations came under Freeman's wing in 1987 when Stone acquired Phoenix-based Southwest Forest Industries and created …