Northrop Grumman Corporation announced today that its board of directors has elected Ronald D. Sugar
, the company's president and chief operating officer, as Northrop Grumman's next chief executive officer.
(Photo: http://www.newscom.com/cgi-bin/prnh/20030219/LAW068 )
Sugar, a 35-year defense industry veteran, will assume leadership of the
nation's second largest defense contractor effective April 1, 2003. In
addition to his election as CEO, he will retain the position of company
The announcement culminates an orderly succession plan by the board of
directors that accommodates the decision of Kent Kresa
, Northrop Grumman's
chairman and CEO, to retire after reaching the board's mandatory retirement
age of 65 for senior executives. Kresa will continue as non-employee chairman
until Oct. 1, 2003.
"Ron Sugar is a talented and seasoned executive who possesses a thorough
understanding of our business, our strategy and our potential," said Kresa.
"Since arriving at Northrop Grumman after our April 2001 acquisition of Litton
Industries, Ron and I have worked closely together. He has distinguished
himself throughout the organization as a strong manager with an uncompromising
commitment to excellence. Under his leadership, Northrop Grumman will be in
very capable hands and will continue on a steady and consistent course."
Sugar said, "I am truly honored by the board of directors' decision and
look forward to leading Northrop Grumman. This is the opportunity of a
lifetime. Northrop Grumman is a defense technology leader with outstanding
employees, a strong tradition of operating performance, and a solid balance
sheet. My initial focus will be to assure the organization continues to
perform well while optimizing the great strategic strengths of the company."
Sugar continued, "On behalf of the board of directors and the 120,000 men
and women of this organization, we owe Kent our deepest gratitude for the
vision and leadership he provided over the past decade. We look forward to
benefiting from his continued role as chairman."
Kresa said, "Serving as the chief executive of Northrop Grumman for the
past 13 years has been one of the most rewarding experiences of my life. Over
the past decade, we have created one of the most powerful and best-positioned
defense companies in the world. With a portfolio of military systems and
information technologies that are at the cutting edge of 21st century warfare,
we have a wonderful future ahead of us. And while I will miss the day-to-day
duties of CEO, I look forward to continuing in my role as chairman. This will
be a very smooth and orderly leadership transition that will serve the best
interests of our shareholders, customers and employees."