U.S. Bancorp has once again consolidated its CEO and chairman roles.
The Minneapolis company on Tuesday named Andy Cecere as chairman of the board. The announcement comes nearly a year to the day after Cecere, 57, was named CEO. The appointment will take effect at the company’s annual meeting in April.
Cecere will succeed Richard Davis, who stayed on as chairman after relinquishing his CEO title last year. Davis will fully retire from U.S. Bancorp once the board transition takes place.
“Andy’s transition to CEO has been seamless, and the company is performing well,” said David O’Maley, the company’s lead independent director, in a press release. “His leadership is well respected by this board and among the company’s many different stakeholders.”
Cecere joined U.S. Bancorp in 1985, and held a number of senior roles at the company on his way to the corner office, including chief financial officer and vice chairman of wealth management.
The announcement Tuesday was, in many ways, expected. Despite the growing pressure on companies to permanently separate the roles of chairman and CEO, as a matter of good governance, U.S. Bancorp emphasized last year, when Cecere took the helm, that many big companies temporarily separate the roles as they work through a CEO succession.
When Davis took over as CEO in 2006, for instance, Jerry Grundhofer, the company’s longtime chief, stayed on as chairman for an additional year.
In the announcement Tuesday, O’Maley thanked Davis for his service to the $459 billion-asset company. Davis joined U.S. Bancorp in 1993.
In the year since Davis announced his retirement from U.S. Bancorp, questions have lingered in the industry about what the widely respected executive plans to do next.
Last January, during his final earnings call as CEO, Davis said that, after a more than decade at the helm, it was simply time for him to pursue “another calling” in life. He did not provide details, but said that he wanted to focus on work that was service-oriented.
Analysts questioned why he was retiring in the first place when, by many measures, he was at the top of his game.
“Rumors of my bad health of early demise are greatly exaggerated, because I feel quite good today,” said Davis, who was 58 years old at the time.
A spokesman for the company did not comment when asked Tuesday about his plans.