Apple adds financial exec Sue Wagner to its board of directors
It’s been a while since Apple made any changes to its board of directors, but the company on Thursday welcomed its newest member, Susan L. Wagner. Wagner, a founding partner and director of asset-management company BlackRock, previously served as that company’s vice chairman until mid-2012. She replaces Intuit Chairman Bill Campbell, who has served on the company’s board of directors since Steve Jobs’s return in 1997.
“Sue is a pioneer in the financial industry and we are excited to welcome her to Apple’s board of directors,” Apple CEO Tim Cook said in the company’s statement. “We believe her strong experience, especially in [mergers and acquisitions] and building a global business across both developed and emerging markets, will be extremely valuable as Apple continues to grow around the world.”
Wagner earned a bachelor’s degree in English and Economics from Wellesley College, as well as an MBA in finance from the University of Chicago. In the past, she’s been honored by Fortune as one of the 50 Most Powerful Women in Business as well as by the National Council for Research on Women. She also has a history of supporting and encouraging other women at BlackRock, via the Women’s Initiative Network.
“I have always admired Apple for its innovative products and dynamic leadership team, and I’m honored to be joining their board,” Wagner said in the statement. “I have tremendous respect for Tim, Art and the other board members, and I look forward to working with them.”
Campbell’s retirement marks the end of the longest tenure on Apple’s current board; that mantle now passes to Mickey Drexler, Chairman and CEO of J.Crew, who has served on the board since 1999.
Wagner is only the second woman on Apple’s current board of directors, alongside Grameen America president and CEO Andrea Jung, who joined the board in 2008. A number of tech companies have recently come under fire for a lack of diversity in their boards and executive teams. With Wagner’s history of women within business, it seems likely that this is an area on which Apple wants to focus some effort. Earlier this year, the company also added the first female member of its executive team, former Burberry CEO Angela Ahrendts, who now heads up the company’s retail operations.
It’s yet unknown on what committees Wagner will serve; Campbell’s departure leaves vacancies on the company’s Audit Committee and Nominating Committee, the latter of which he chaired.