UPS has elected Mississippi native David P. Abney, UPS Chief Executive Officer, as Chairman of the Board, effective immediately. Abney succeeds Scott Davis as Chairman, who will retire from his position on the UPS Board effective as of the 2016 Annual Meeting of Shareowners.
Additionally, the Board of Directors created a new Lead Independent Director position, and today the independent directors appointed William R. Johnson to the role, effective immediately. Among other responsibilities, the new Lead Independent Director will play an active role in setting future agendas for UPS Board meetings, preside at meetings of independent directors, serve as the liaison between the Chairman and the independent directors, and consult on shareholder engagement and governance matters. Johnson, a former chairman, president and CEO of the H. J. Heinz Company, will continue to serve as Chairperson of the Nominating and Corporate Governance Committee.
“Our decision to combine the roles of Board Chairman and CEO is a result of thoughtful consideration of the Board’s leadership structure. This change will improve strategic alignment and support the company’s ability to deliver value through profitable global growth, operating efficiency, customer satisfaction, and continuous improvement,” said Johnson. “David Abney’s leadership on our Board, combined with many years of distinguished UPS service and a strong track record as CEO have prepared him to fulfill the role of both Chairman and CEO.”
David previously served as chief operating officer since 2007, overseeing logistics, sustainability, engineering and all facets of the UPS transportation network. UPS’s global transportation network serves more than 220 countries and territories, and includes a ground fleet of more than 96,000 vehicles and an air fleet of more than 500 aircraft. UPS operates major air hubs in Louisville, Kentucky; Cologne, Germany; and Shenzhen, China.
Earlier in his career, he served as president of SonicAir, a same-day delivery service that signaled UPS’s move into the service parts logistics sector. David began his UPS career in 1974 in a small facility in Greenwood, Mississippi, while attending Delta State University.
A native of Greenwood, Abney earned a bachelor’s degree in business administration from Delta State University. He serves on the Board of Directors of the Delta State University Alumni Foundation. He and his wife, Sherry, sponsor the school’s annual symposium on international business.
“Leading UPS into the future is a great honor, and I thank each and every UPS employee, our Management Committee, and our Board for the trust placed in me every day,” said Abney. “Continued international expansion, global e-commerce acceleration and growth in specialized markets present endless opportunities ahead, and it is a privilege to steer UPS to continued success.”
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