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Apple appoints former Northrop Grumman CEO to board

By Cecilia Kang

photo: Ronald Sugar, credit: Bloomberg

Apple said Wednesday that former Northrop Grumman chief executive Ronald Sugar has joined its board of directors.

Sugar, who retired from the government defense and security contracting firm earlier this year, will serve as chairman of Apple's audit and finance committee, according to a news release.

With the appointment, Sugar joins a diverse group of political and business leaders who have formed a powerhouse board of retail, engineering and political know-how. The board includes Vice President Al Gore, Intuit chairman Bill Campbell, J. Crew chairman Millard Drexler, Avon Products chairwoman Andrew Jung and Genentech chairman Arthur Levinson.

“Ron is an engineer at heart, who then became a very successful business leader,” Apple chief executive Steve Jobs said in the release. “In addition to having been the CEO of a high-tech Fortune 100 company, Ron has a Ph.D. in engineering and has been involved in the development of some very sophisticated technology.”

Sugar served as chairman and CEO of Northrop Grumman from 2003 until his retirement. He was previously an executive with Litton Industries and TRW Inc., where he served as chief financial officer.

In Aug. 2009, Google CEO Eric Schmidt left Apple's board, citing growing conflicts of interest as both firms compete for dominance in the mobile phone market. Google's Android-based smart phones and Apple's iPhone are the fastest-growing platforms for mobile devices. The Federal Trade Commission had launched an investigation into the board ties between Apple and Google, which observers said led to Schmidt's voluntary departure. Last October, Genentech's Levinson left Google's board.

By Cecilia Kang  | November 17, 2010; 10:00 AM ET
Categories:  Apple  
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A sweet move by Apple.

Posted by: TheBabu | November 17, 2010 3:18 PM | Report abuse

A sweet move by Apple.

Posted by: TheBabu | November 17, 2010 3:20 PM | Report abuse

Military apps in the works for Apple?

Posted by: cbmuzik | November 18, 2010 10:16 AM | Report abuse

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