ATLANTA — James Robert B. Quincey, president and chief executive officer of Coca-Cola Co., has been elected chairman of the company’s board. He will succeed Muhtar Kent, who plans to retire in April 2019.
Mr. Quincey will become Coca-Cola’s 14th chairman in the company’s 132-year history following the company’s annual meeting in April 2019. He will then serve as chairman and c.e.o. Brian Smith is set to take over as president and chief operating officer on Jan. 1.
Mr. Kent was chairman and c.e.o. from 2009 until 2017, and he continued as chairman after Mr. Quincey was named c.e.o.
“One of the most important jobs of a chairman is to ensure that a strong leadership succession plan is in place,” Mr. Kent said. “I’m delighted that the board has elected James as chairman. He is the right leader to take the Coca-Cola system to the next level and through the next decade.”
Additionally, Coca-Cola’s board has elected Maria Elena Lagomasino as lead independent director. She will succeed Sam Nunn, who will not stand for re-election at the 2019 annual meeting. A former U.S. senator from Georgia, Mr. Nunn spent 22 years on Coca-Cola’s board, including the past five years as lead independent director.
Ms. Lagomasino is c.e.o. and managing partner of WE Family Offices, a global family office serving high net-worth families. She also is on the board of The Walt Disney Co. and previously was a director of Avon Products Inc.