Executive Directorate


The Executive Directorate manages the association

Thilo Brodtmann
Executive Director

Born in Oettingen

1984 - 1990

University of Bayreuth, Business administration Economics

Graduated with a degree in business studies (Dipl.-Kfm.)

1991 - 1994
Economics expert in the VDMA Precision Tools Association

1995 - 1998 
Managing Director of the VDMA Precision Tools Association

1996 - 1998
General Manager der International Special Tooling and Machining Association (ISTMA Precision), Frankfurt

1999 - 2001
Member of the VDMA Executive Directorate

1999 - 2014 
Managing Director of the Robotics + Automation Association

2000 - 2014
Managing Director of the Productronics Association 

2001 - 2015
Deputy Executive Director of VDMA

seit 2015
Executive Director of the German Engineering Association (VDMA – Verband Deutscher Maschinen- und Anlagenbau)


Hartmut Rauen
Deputy Executive Director 


Born in Wittlich

1987 – 1992    
Studied Mechanical Engineering at RWTH Aachen

1992 - 1994    
Joined VDMA Research Association for Combustion Engines

since 1994    
Research Association for Drive Technology (FVA), Managing Director since 1996

since 1995    
Managing Director of VDMA Fluid Power Association

since 1996    
Managing director of the VDMA Power Transmission Engineering Association

1997 – 1998    
General Secretary of the Federation of European Bearing Manufacturers' Association (FEBMA)

since 1999    
Member of the Executive Directorate of the VDMA, with responsibility for technology, standards, research, education and innovation

since 1999    
Member of the DFAM board (German research association for the use of microelectronics)

since 2012    
Member of the curatorship of the Fraunhofer Institute for Manufacturing Engineering and Automation (IPA)

since 2012    
Member of the curatorship of the Fraunhofer Institute for Systems and Innovation Research (ISI)

since 2012    
Chairperson of the board of directors of the Research Association for Mechanical Engineering (FKM)

since 2015    
Deputy Executive Director of VDMA

since 2019
Member of the curatorship at the National Metrology Institute of Germany (Physikalisch-Technische Bundesanstalt, PTB)


Dr. Bernd Scherer

Member of Executive Directorate

Born in Olpe

1976 – 1982    
Studied Agricultural Science in Bonn

1982 – 1992    
Business consultant at AFC-Unternehmensberatung, Bonn; Partner

Doctorate (Dr. agr.)

since 1992    
VDMA, Frankfurt
Managing director of Agricultural Machinery, Fire Fighting Equipment, Municipal Equipment associations
Managing director of the Agricultural Machinery Industry Foundation
Managing director of the Agriculatural Machinery working group

since 1999    
Member of the Executive Directorate with responsibility for European strategy, European Office, project management, corporate identity


Dr. Ralph Wiechers

Member of Executive Directorate


Born in Höxter


Trained as industrial management assistant, Arntz-Optibelt KG, Höxter



Studied for degree in economics, Karlsruhe and Mainz


Research associate at Institute of Public Finance at Johannes Gutenberg University of Mainz; awarded a doctorate (Dr. rer. pol.)


Joined VDMA

Economics advisor in office of Executive Directorate

Head of office of Executive Directorate

Head of Economic and Social Policy department

Since 1998    
Head of Tax department

Since 2000    
Head of National Economy and Statistics department/chief economist

Since 2015    
Member of Executive Directorate, responsible for finance; Managing director of VDMA Services