HP announced that Meg Whitman, HP president and CEO, has been appointed chairman of the board of directors, and current director Pat Russo has been appointed lead independent director. Additionally, Klaus Kleinfeld, chief executive and chairman of Alcoa, has been appointed to the board, bringing the total number of board members to 12.
Whitman has been president and CEO of HP since September 2011 and a member of the board since January 2011. Russo has been a director since 2011. She leads the HR and Compensation Committee and is a member of the Nominating, Governance and Social Responsibility Committee.
“I’m extremely pleased that the board has elected Meg its chairman and Pat lead independent director,” said Ralph Whitworth, departing chairman of HP’s board. “Meg and Pat are unwavering in their commitment to the corporate governance, capital allocation and management incentive principles that drove our decisions these past three years. They will stick to and strengthen the critical practices and disciplines we’ve put in place. HP is in great hands.”
“Meg has been an outstanding leader since coming to HP, and we believe that as chairman she can most effectively drive the turnaround and continue to build value for our shareholders,” said Gary Reiner, chairman of the Nominating, Governance and Social Responsibility Committee.
“Throughout Pat’s three years on the board, her deep operational and technology experience and her commitment to governance best practice have proved invaluable,” Reiner added. “She was the obvious choice to step in as lead independent director.”
Kleinfeld, 56, serves as chairman and CEO of Alcoa, a global leader in lightweight metals technology, engineering and manufacturing. Under Kleinfeld’s leadership, Alcoa has been pivoting from a commodities-focused company to a diversified lightweight metals enterprise for the automotive, aerospace, defense and commercial transportation industries.
Prior to Alcoa, Kleinfeld spent two decades at Siemens, rising to become the CEO of the global electronics and industrial conglomerate. During his tenure, Kleinfeld presided over a dramatic transformation of the company, reshaping its portfolio around three high-growth areas, resulting in an increase of revenues and a near doubling of market capitalization.
“As CEO of two global companies during major turnarounds, Klaus has a deep understanding of the challenges and opportunities facing HP today,” said Whitman. “Klaus’s leadership, strategic vision and expertise in successfully leading these companies through times of change will be a positive addition to our already outstanding board. I look forward to working with him.”
Kleinfeld will serve as a member of the Nominating, Governance and Social Responsibility Committee. In an additional appointment, Robert Bennett has been appointed chairman of the Finance and Investment Committee.