This month, Apple announced that former Boeing CFO would be taking over the reins for the computer giant. James Bell was the CFO of Boeing from 2003-2012, and he also served as the chief executive for several months in 2005. Bell is on the board with other large companies, like J.P Morgan Chase & Co, and Dow Chemical Company.
Changes to the Apple Board
The Apple Inc. board currently has 8 members, including Walt Disney CEO, Robert Iger, and former VP of the United States, Al Gore. Since Steve Job’s death, the company has been hard at work restructuring its senior roles. Jony Ive was appointed Apple’s chief design officer in July of this year. Also this summer, Lisa Jackson, former head of the Environmental Protection Agency, became Apple’s vice president of environment and social initiatives. Bell will be the most recent addition to the company since Gap’s former CEO Millard Drexler retired from Apple this year.
The company is looking to strengthen its leadership and reshape its board. James Bell was brought on as CFO for his experience with global financial strategies. Apple CEO Timothy D. Cook stated that he is “thrilled to welcome him” as he “brings a wealth of global, financial, and industrial experience [at Boeing].”
James Bell, Former CFO of Boeing
Bell began his career with the Rockwell company as an accountant. From there, he was led first into management, then internal auditor, and finally, a manger of accounting. In 1996, Boeing acquired Rockwell’s aerospace and defense units, opening a door for Bell. Bell joined Boeing that same year. Bell has held several positions for the company, including VP of contracts, senior VP of finance and corporate controller. Bell was appointed CFO of Boeing in 2005, after the former CFO was fired in relation to government contract scandal.
Bell as a Step Towards Diversification
Bell’s 38 years of financial experience on a global level made him top pick for Apple Inc. Bell says of Apple: “I have a tremendous respect for the company’s ability to innovate.” The company hopes to continue to diversify its leadership and hire more women and underrepresented minorities. Over the past year, Apple has hired more diverse employees than any other previous year. Bell, who is an African American businessman, is another hire in Apple’s step towards diversification and leadership restructuring.