Bechtel Announces Leadership Changes
03 February 2014
SAN FRANCISCO, California
Bill Dudley Named President and Chief Executive Officer; Succeeds Riley Bechtel, Who Remains Chairman of the Board
Bechtel, one of the world’s leading engineering, procurement, and construction companies, today announced several leadership changes throughout its worldwide organization, effective immediately.
Bill Dudley, who has served as president and chief operating officer since 2008, has been named president & CEO of the Bechtel group of companies, which includes Bechtel Corporation and all of its subsidiaries worldwide. Dudley takes over for Riley Bechtel, who is stepping down for health reasons from day-to-day operations as the company’s chief executive. Bechtel, who will remain chairman of the company’s board of directors, has been chairman & CEO of the company for nearly 25 years.
“For many years Bechtel has approached succession planning with diligence to ensure smooth transitions in leadership. Our plan includes provision for unplanned events, which we are now encountering. We are well prepared to act quickly in everybody’s best interest with no loss of momentum,” said Bechtel. He added, “Bill has been our top candidate for CEO succession for some time, and he is well qualified in every respect to take over now. He will be an outstanding CEO for our company; he is highly regarded by our colleagues, customers, partners, and suppliers. I have tremendous confidence in Bill’s ability to continue to move the company forward.”
Dudley is the first nonfamily member to serve as president and CEO since the company’s founding. He joined the company in 1981 and over the next 20 years excelled in a variety of operational and executive roles, including managing key global projects, serving as president of the company’s Europe, Africa, Middle East, and Southwest Asia region, and serving as president of the Oil, Gas & Chemicals business unit. He was elected to the company’s board of directors in 2000 and named president and chief operating officer in 2008.
“I look forward to furthering the successful path for Bechtel that Riley began more than 24 years ago as CEO, building on the foundation started by his great-grandfather in 1898,” said Dudley. “Bechtel is a remarkable company, and I am honored to be entrusted with this role.”
In other appointments, Jack Futcher, currently president of the company’s largest and most successful business unit—Oil, Gas, & Chemicals—has been named an executive vice president and sponsor of the Oil, Gas, & Chemicals and Mining & Metals business units as well as the regional organizations. As executive sponsor, Futcher will provide additional oversight of and support to these businesses, which have similar global characteristics. Futcher joined Bechtel in 1980, was named president of the company’s power unit—Bechtel Power—in 2008, and became president of Oil, Gas, & Chemicals and elected to the company’s board of directors in 2010.
Brendan Bechtel, son of Riley Bechtel, succeeds Futcher as president of the Oil, Gas, &Chemicals business. Brendan was previously the general manager of the company’s liquefied natural gas business. He is credited with being the principal architect of updating the Bechtel Leadership Model, which has guided the company’s leadership behaviors for many years. Brendan, who first began working for the company on summer breaks while in high school, becomes the fifth-generation member of the Bechtel family to serve in an executive leadership capacity.
Alasdair Cathcart, a 25-year veteran of the company, will take over for Brendan as general manager of the LNG business. Today, Bechtel is responsible for more than half of the world’s LNG capacity under construction. Cathcart has held positions in multiple Bechtel business units and served in a variety of project, functional, general management, and executive leadership roles, which included succeeding Futcher as president of Bechtel Power before focusing full-time on the company’s LNG business across Australia.
“I am delighted to announce these immediate promotions for Bill, Jack, Brendan, and Alasdair. They are all very well deserved, and each of these leaders embodies the necessary qualities to propel the company forward,” the elder Bechtel commented, adding, “Words cannot fully describe the pride I feel for what the company has accomplished in the 24 years since I was privileged to become its CEO. I look forward to continuing to do my part to ensure that Bechtel is the premier engineer constructor on the planet and a great place to work.”
Bechtel is widely regarded for its core values, first established 116 years ago and kept relevant through active family leadership. Today, three generations of the Bechtel family serve in leadership capacities—something that has not occurred since the 1980s: Stephen D. Bechtel, Jr., Riley’s father, recently celebrated more than 60 years with the company and continues to serve as senior director on the board.