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McCormick Alumna Ginni Rometty Named CEO of IBM

Oct 25, 2011 4:00 PM
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Virginia “Ginni” Rometty, a top IBM executive and McCormick alumna, was named CEO of the informational technology company Tuesday. She will step into her new role January 1, becoming the first female CEO in the company’s 100-year history.

Rometty most recently served as IBM’s senior vice president and group executive for sales, marketing, and strategy. She will succeed the current CEO, Samuel J. Palmisano, though he will remain the company’s chairman.

Rometty was the speaker at McCormick's undergraduate convocation in June 2010. She also visited Northwestern in March 2011 to give the IBM Centennial lecture to a packed room of students, faculty, and alumni. It was one of only six lectures she gave at universities around the world. (Watch her IBM Centennial lecture.)

She said she chose Northwestern — the only U.S. university she visited — because she is an alumna and because, when she was here in the late 1970s studying computer science, she learned an important lesson that guided her throughout her 30 years at IBM.

“What I felt I took away was how to think,” she said.

Read the IBM press release.

Read McCormick magazine's fall 2010 profile of Rometty.

Read Ginni Rometty's remarks at McCormick's 2010 Undergraduate Convocation.

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