We have been anticipating a transition at Rockwell Automation, and today the company announced it has happened. Its board of directors has elected Blake D. Moret, a 30-year veteran of the Company, as president and chief executive officer, effective July 1, 2016. At that time Keith D. Nosbusch, 65, who has been president and chief executive officer since 2004, will transition from those roles while continuing as chairman of the board. Moret, 53, is currently senior vice president of the Company’s Control Products & Solutions segment.
A similar transition occurred when Nosbusch became CEO—Don Davis remained as Chairman for a period of time to assist the transition.
Rockwell had a strong group of internal contenders for the position. Any would have been a good choice in my opinion.
Donald R. Parfet, Lead Director, said: “Blake has proven himself to be an exceptional leader, with demonstrated readiness to lead the company. We welcome him to his new role at the conclusion of a deliberate and planned succession process. We are delighted he will build on the Company’s many accomplishments under Keith’s direction and propel our vision of The Connected Enterprise to the next level.”
“The past 12 years have been transformational for Rockwell Automation,” Parfet continued. “We’ve become a global technology leader and the world’s largest company dedicated to industrial automation and information. Equally important, we are well positioned to accelerate our evolution with industry-leading innovation that improves our customers’ global competitiveness.”
“We thank Keith for his outstanding leadership during this period, including his work as a vocal champion of smart, productive, and secure manufacturing. We are pleased that he has agreed to stay on as chairman so that the Company can continue to benefit from his experience and support Blake’s transition to CEO.”
Nosbusch said: “It has been an honor and privilege to lead Rockwell Automation over the past 12 years. While as a team we enjoyed tremendous success, I have no doubt that we are well positioned for an even greater future. Blake is the ideal executive to move Rockwell Automation forward in its next chapter. He brings a strong customer focus, as well as a deep understanding of the Company’s values, culture, people, and technology, and how each of these power the Company’s success.”
Moret said: “I am honored to have the opportunity to lead Rockwell Automation and its talented employees into an exciting future. We have a deep management team, unmatched technology solutions, domain expertise across a broad range of industries, and enduring customer relationships around the world. We are committed to continue to deliver customer and shareowner value in the years ahead.”
Moret has 30 years of experience in sales and business management roles in product, services, and solutions businesses across Rockwell Automation. He began his career in 1985 as a sales trainee, and subsequently served in senior positions across the organization, including international assignments in Europe and Canada. In 2011, he was named senior vice president of Control Products & Solutions, one of the Company’s two business segments, with FY15 sales of $3.6 billion.
Moret is a graduate of Georgia Institute of Technology, where he earned a bachelor’s degree in mechanical engineering. He has served as Chair of the Board of the Manufacturing Institute of the National Association of Manufacturers. Additionally, he is a member of the Board of Directors for the Milwaukee-based Urban Ecology Center, the Board of Directors of the United Way of Greater Milwaukee, and the Advisory Board of the Woodruff School of Mechanical Engineering at Georgia Tech.
Be interesting to see how Rockwell develops under his leadership.
Yes, Bob, I thought those two were the front runners. But Sujeet Chand, Ted Crandall, and John McDermott were all pretty strong, too. Crandall ran one of the divisions and then became CFO.
The most interesting thing will be what happens to Frank Kulaszewicz. Will he get a CEO position elsewhere, or stay? Former Rockwell SVPs and VPs are all over the place these days.
This is far from shocking, unlike the executive change at ABB a couple of years ago, and the Honeywell Process changes over the past 10 years, or the revolving door at Invensys for a while.