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Emerson Announces Retirement of CEO David N. Farr

Feb. 8, 2021
Lal Karsanbhai took over his position as CEO, effective on February 5.

Emerson (St. Louis): The company announced that its CEO David N. Farr retired from his position, with Lal Karsanbhai taking over as CEO and joining the board of directors, effective February 5.

Although he has been with the company in a corporate staff position since 1981, Farr was named CEO in 2000 and chairman of Emerson's board of directors in 2004. He will remain as chairman through May 4. Over his two decades at the helm of the $16.8-billion global company, he lead Emerson through multiple strategic evolutions to grow the company's global footprint, stay ahead of changing market conditions and advance the organization's capabilities and competitiveness on the worldwide stage. 

Additionally, Farr was a voice for manufacturing, having served as the chairman of the board of the National Association of Manufacturers from 2017 to 2019, working on Capitol Hill to advocate and advance initiatives that would build industry in the U.S. He also serves on the board of directors for the U.S.-China Business Council and has been a member of the board of directors for IBM since 2012. He and his wife are also actively committed to the St. Louis community, where he serves on several board of directors for nonprofit organizations.

"David is a tremendous leader who has brought the company through difficult times – 9/11, the dot-com bubble, the Great Recession and now a global pandemic – with conviction and an unwavering belief in the strength of Emerson," said Clemens A.H. Boersig, lead independent director of Emerson's board, int eh press release. "Emerson has a long history of strong leaders in the corner office, with David being just the third CEO in the last 66 years. We wish him the best in his retirement and are grateful to have his expertise in the coming months as chairman of the board."

Karsanbhair is currently a member of Emerson's Office of the Chief Executive and leads a business with $11.2 billion in global sales in 2020. He began his career at Emerson in 1995 as an international planner; was appointed director of corporate planning in 1999; and served as VP of regulator technologies from 2002 to 2005. Later positions include VP and general manager of natural gas for Emerson in France, president of Emerson's Fisher regulator technologies, and VP of planning with responsibility for global strategy. Most recently, he was named president of Emerson's former Network Power business in Europe, Middle East and Africa in 2014 and became group president of the Rosemount measurement & analytical business in 2016.

During his tenure at Emerson, he has worked in Europe, Africa and North America, and he is fluent in Portuguese, French and English. He has a bachelor's degree in economics from the University of Michigan and an MBA from Washington University in St. Louis.

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