ATLANTA -- (Business Wire)
The Board of Directors of The Coca-Cola Company today announced
legendary businessmen Donald R. Keough and James B. Williams will not
stand for re-election to the Board at the Company’s Annual Meeting of
Shareowners in April. The leaders retire after decades of distinguished
service to The Coca-Cola Company.
Donald R. Keough, Non-Executive Chairman of the Board, Allen & Company Incorporated (Photo: Business Wire)
Keough, 86, served as President and Chief Operating Officer of The
Coca-Cola Company from 1981 to 1993, though his Coca-Cola history dates
to 1950 when he joined Butter-Nut Coffee, which was first acquired by
Duncan Foods, and then by The Coca-Cola Company in 1960. During his
tenure with Coca-Cola, Keough served as head of The Coca-Cola Foods
Division from 1971 to 1973, as Chairman of the Board of Coca-Cola
Enterprises from 1986 to 1993, and as Chairman of Columbia Pictures,
Inc., from 1982 to 1989. He retired as President, Chief Operating
Officer and a Director of the Company in April 1993. He was again
elected as a Director in 2004.
Keough is known for his many business and personal accomplishments,
having successfully steered the Company through the ‘cola wars’ of the
1980s. During his tenure, the Company and the system saw rapid
international expansion and significant shareowner value was created.
Keough was also known for his keen ability to connect with and cultivate
relationships with all those who came in contact with Coca-Cola. He is
regarded as one of the most successful leaders in the Company’s 126-year
For the past 20 years, Keough has served as non-executive Chairman of
the Board of Allen & Company Incorporated, a privately held investment
firm. He also is Chairman of DMK International, and a Director of
Berkshire Hathaway Inc. and IAC/InterActive Corp. Keough also has served
as non-executive Chairman of the Board of Allen & Company, and has
served on the Boards of McDonald’s, The Washington Post Company, H.J.
Heinz Company, Convera Corporation and The Home Depot. He is Chairman
emeritus of the Board of Trustees and a Life Trustee of the University
of Notre Dame.
James B. Williams, 79, is a respected banking executive who has served
as a Director of The Coca-Cola Company since 1979 and as Chairman of the
Board’s Finance Committee since 1985. He is the former Chairman and
Chief Executive Officer of SunTrust Banks, Inc., a position he held from
1991 to 1998. He also served as Chairman of the Executive Committee of
SunTrust Banks, Inc. from 1998 to 2004.
Williams’ role as Director with Coca-Cola has been a natural connection
between the Company and the financial institution that financed the sale
of the Company in 1919 and safeguarded the secret formula for Coca-Cola
in an Atlanta vault for more than 80 years.
Williams graduated from Emory College in 1955, joined Trust Company
Bank, and quickly rose through the ranks to become President. In 1979,
he was asked by Robert Woodruff, legendary leader of The Coca-Cola
Company, to become a member of the Board of Directors and to chair Emory
University's capital campaign. He is credited with contributing to Emory
medical school's dramatic rise to one of the nation's top 20
research-oriented medical schools.
In addition to Coca-Cola, Williams serves as a Director of Marine
Products Corporation, Rollins, Inc., and RPC, Inc. He has also served on
the Boards of Georgia Pacific, Genuine Parts and Sonat, Inc.
“It’s hard to imagine Coca-Cola without Don and Jimmy,” said Muhtar
Kent, Chairman and CEO, The Coca-Cola Company. “We are grateful to both
of them for the immeasurable leadership they’ve brought to our Company
for decades. Many of our current Coca-Cola leaders learned this business
under Don, and I have personally benefited from his guidance, mentorship
and friendship for more than 30 years. Likewise, Jimmy has been a great
advisor to me and the Board, and we have all gained from his clear
direction and wise counsel.”
About The Coca-Cola Company
Coca-Cola Company (NYSE: KO) is the world's largest beverage
company, refreshing consumers with more than 500 sparkling and still
brands. Led by Coca-Cola, the world's most valuable brand, our Company's
portfolio features 16 billion-dollar brands including Diet Coke, Fanta,
Sprite, Coca-Cola Zero, vitaminwater, Powerade, Minute Maid, Simply,
Georgia and Del Valle. Globally, we are the No. 1 provider of sparkling
beverages, ready-to-drink coffees, and juices and juice drinks. Through
the world's largest beverage distribution system, consumers in more than
200 countries enjoy our beverages at a rate of more than 1.8 billion
servings a day. With an enduring commitment to building sustainable
communities, our Company is focused on initiatives that reduce our
environmental footprint, support active, healthy living, create a safe,
inclusive work environment for our associates, and enhance the economic
development of the communities where we operate. Together with our
bottling partners, we rank among the world's top 10 private employers
with more than 700,000 system associates. For more information, visit
Coca-Cola Journeyat www.coca-colacompany.com,
follow us on Twitter at twitter.com/CocaColaCo
or check out our blog, Coca-Cola Unbottled, at www.coca-colablog.com.
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The Coca-Cola Company
Source: The Coca-Cola Company
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