BlackRock founding partner Susan L. Wagner has been elected to Apple’s board of directors, succeeding Bill Campbell, who, after 17 years, is retiring as the board’s longest-serving member.
Wagner helped build BlackRock into one of the world’s largest asset-management companies, with more than $4.32 trillion under management. She held a variety of leadership positions with the firm, including serving as its vice chairman until 2012.
“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 a statement. “We believe her strong experience, especially in M&A and building a global business across both developed and emerging markets, will be extremely valuable as Apple continues to grow around the world.”
Wagner graduated with honors from Wellesley College with a bachelor’s degree in English and Economics, and earned an MBA in finance from the University of Chicago. At BlackRock, she championed the advancement of women within the company — a coveted perspective in Silicon Valley, where companies like Apple are criticized for lack of diversity. She serves on the boards of BlackRock, Swiss Re, Wellesley College and Hackley School.
Campbell’s relationship with Apple dates to 1983, when he joined the company as vice president of marketing. The Intuit chairman enjoyed a close relationship with the late Apple co-founder, Steve Jobs, and his coaching of senior executives in Silicon Valley was so well known, he was sometimes referred to as the “CEO Whisperer.”
“When Bill joined Apple’s board, the company was on the brink of collapse,” Cook said. “He not only helped Apple survive, but he’s led us to a level of success that was simply unimaginable back in 1997.”