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IBM Virginia Rometty

IBM elects Virginia Rometty as first female CEO


By Ishbel Macleod, PR and social media consultant

October 26, 2011 | 2 min read

IBM has promoted Virginia Rometty from senior vice president and group executive for sales, marketing and strategy to CEO and president of the company.

Rometty, who joined IBM in 1981 as a systems engineer, was elected by the board of directors and will start her new role on 1 January 2012. She succeeds Samuel Palmisano, who will remain chairman of the board.

Palmisano said: “Ginni Rometty has successfully led several of IBM’s most important businesses over the past decade – from the formation of IBM Global Business Services to the build-out of our Growth Markets Unit.

“But she is more than a superb operational executive. With every leadership role, she has strengthened our ability to integrate IBM’s capabilities for our clients. She has spurred us to keep pace with the needs and aspirations of our clients by deepening our expertise and industry knowledge.

“Ginni’s long-term strategic thinking and client focus are seen in our growth initiatives, from cloud computing and analytics to the commercialization of Watson. She brings to the role of CEO a unique combination of vision, client focus, unrelenting drive, and passion for IBMers and the company’s future. I know the board agrees with me that Ginni is the ideal CEO to lead IBM into its second century.”

IBM Virginia Rometty

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