Fairfield University Alumnus John Flannery '83 to Lead General Electric as CEO
Fairfield University alumnus John Flannery ’83 has been named CEO of General Electric effective August 1, 2017 and chairman and CEO of the company effective January 1, 2018.
Flannery, a GE veteran of 30 years and current president and CEO of GE Healthcare, succeeds longstanding, 16-year chairman and CEO, Jeffrey Immelt, who will remain as chairman of the Board until he retires from GE in December 2017.
“John is the right person to lead GE today,” Immelt said. “He has broad experience across multiple businesses, cycles, and geographies. He has a track record of success and has led one of our most essential businesses. Most important are his strong leadership traits — good judgment, resilience, a learner, a team builder, and a tough-minded individual and competitor. He will be trusted by investors, our customers, and the GE team.”
Flannery graduated from Fairfield in 1983 with a bachelor’s degree in finance. "My time at Fairfield University was excellent and left me with a lifelong sense of curiosity about the world and a passion for continuous learning and serving others,” he said. “I have had the good fortune to be able to carry the Fairfield story to many places around the world—but in my heart I have never been far from Loyola 3!"
With a focus on Corporate Markets, Accounting, Capital Markets, Economics and Marketing, Flannery earned an MBA from the Wharton School at the University of Pennsylvania and began his career at GE Capital in 1987, evaluating risk for leveraged buy-outs. He was a leader in GE’s corporate restructuring group before moving into global positions in Latin America, Asia and India.
As president and CEO of GE Equity, Flannery led the business through a difficult cycle. Leading the Asia Pacific region for GE Capital beginning in 2005, he grew earnings in Japan by 100 percent, in Korea by 30 percent, and in Australia by 25 percent. During his tenure in India from 2009 to 2013, Flannery focused on the leadership team and the industrial side of the business increasing sales by 50 percent in 2011. In 2013 he led business development at GE Corporate, headquartered in Fairfield and the $10 billion acquisition of Alstom, the largest industrial acquisition in GE’s history. According to a company issued statement, in his most recent role as president and CEO of GE Healthcare, Flannery has “positioned the $18 billion business for continued success with technology leadership in core imaging, created digital platforms and solutions, expanded Life Sciences through bioprocess solutions, and added key technology to its cell therapy systems business.”
Flannery recently called his appointment as CEO and chairman “the greatest honor” of his career and recognized the work and vision of Jeffrey Immelt. “I am privileged to have spent the last 16 years at the company working for Jeff, one of the greatest business leaders of our time. He has transformed the GE portfolio, globalized the company, and created a vision for the GE of the future by positioning the company to lead in digital and additive manufacturing.”
In the next few months, Flannery said his “focus will be on listening to investors, customers, and employees to determine the next steps for GE.”