Accenture’s board of directors announced that Julie Sweet has been appointed chief executive officer. David Rowland, currently interim chief executive officer, has been appointed executive chairman.
Marge Magner, currently non-executive chair of the board, will resume her role as lead independent director. These changes are effective Sept. 1, 2019.
Sweet is currently chief executive officer of Accenture’s business in North America, the company’s largest geographic market with revenues of approximately $18 billion for fiscal 2018, serving more than 70% of the Fortune 500. Previously, Sweet was Accenture’s general counsel, secretary and chief compliance officer. As a member of Accenture’s senior leadership team for nearly a decade, she has played an integral role in the company’s business and investment strategy. Prior to joining Accenture, Sweet was a partner for 10 years in the law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. Upon assuming the role of chief executive officer, Sweet will join the company’s board of directors.
“Julie is the right person to lead Accenture into the future, given her strong command of our business and proven ability to drive results in our largest market,” said Rowland. “We are on a positive growth trajectory at Accenture and are very well-positioned to continue building on our strong momentum. I am so pleased and proud that Julie will lead our company, and I am excited to work with her — along with our entire senior leadership team — to ensure a seamless transition and on Accenture’s next phase of growth and market leadership.”
Magner said, “Julie has the leadership track record and breadth of business experience we believe are critical to lead Accenture, including the ability to forge major client relationships, a strong focus on leading with innovation, commitment to our people and core values, and a focus on delivering value to shareholders. Speaking on behalf of the board, we look forward to working closely with Julie as chief executive officer.
“At the same time, we are delighted that we will continue to benefit from David’s experience in his active role as executive chair. He has been an exemplary leader as interim chief executive officer during this time of transition, with a steadfast commitment to driving Accenture’s business and building on our strong momentum. We are grateful for his leadership and stewardship. With Julie as chief executive officer and David as executive chair, Accenture has a powerful advantage in the marketplace.”
As executive chair, Rowland will continue to play a key role and be actively involved in Accenture’s business. He will chair the board of directors, act as an advisor to Sweet and be involved in Accenture’s long-term business strategy. He will also continue to represent Accenture with clients around the world and with key external groups.
“I am truly honored to lead our extraordinary company as Accenture’s chief executive officer,” said Sweet. “I look forward to continuing to work closely with our exceptional senior leadership team, along with David, as our executive chairman, and our entire board of directors. Accenture has the most talented people and group of leaders in our industry. Together, we will capture the next waves of growth for Accenture by remaining laser-focused on serving our clients, creating significant value for our shareholders and providing the best career experiences for our people.”
Accenture confirmed that there is no change to the business outlook for the fourth quarter and full fiscal year 2019 that the company provided as part of its third-quarter fiscal 2019 earnings announcement on June 27, 2019.
Julie Sweet, 51, is currently chief executive officer of Accenture in North America, the company’s largest geographic market, representing almost 50% of Accenture’s global revenues. As a member of Accenture’s Global Management Committee for nearly a decade, Sweet has played an integral role in the company’s business and investment strategy. Sweet was Accenture’s general counsel, secretary and chief compliance officer for five years, serving as principal counsel to senior leadership and the board of directors, and was actively involved in executing the company’s M&A strategy and many of its largest and most complex commercial transactions.
Outside of Accenture, Sweet is a leader on topics including innovation, technology’s impact on business, and inclusion and diversity. To address the critical skills gap in America and to create an inclusive innovation economy, she is working with leaders in business, education and government to create a national professional apprenticeship movement.
Sweet serves on the board of directors of Catalyst and is a member of the TechNet Executive Council. She is also a member of the Business Roundtable, a group of chief executive officers of major U.S. corporations formed to promote pro-business public policy, and previously served on its board of directors and as chair of the Technology Committee.
Prior to joining Accenture in 2010, Sweet was a partner for 10 years in the law firm of Cravath, Swaine & Moore LLP. She holds a Bachelor of Arts degree from Claremont McKenna College and a Juris Doctor from Columbia Law School.
David Rowland, 58, was named interim chief executive officer of Accenture on Jan. 10, 2019. Throughout his 36-year career with the company, Rowland has held significant leadership roles and played a major role in shaping Accenture’s growth strategy. Prior to his appointment as interim chief executive officer, he served as Accenture’s chief financial officer since July 2013. Rowland is a longstanding member of Accenture’s Global Management Committee, and served on the board and as Audit Committee chair for Avanade, a joint venture of Accenture and Microsoft. Prior to being named chief financial officer, Rowland served for more than six years as Accenture’s senior vice president of Finance and chaired Accenture’s Operations Council.