This is the week that Marillyn Hewson relinquished the helm of Lockheed Martin to her handpicked successor, James Taiclet. As President & CEO of the world’s leading military contractor, Taiclet will have some big shoes to fill, because Hewson is the most successful defense executive that her generation has produced. However, there are compelling reasons to expect that Taiclet can meet the challenge. First, he was a world-class manager at American Tower, increasing its market cap by 5000% during his tenure at the top. Second, he has a humble and inclusive personality likely to make him popular. Third, he has an engineer’s grasp of aerospace technology. Fourth, he has a deep grasp of global markets where Lockheed Martin will make much of its revenues and returns in the future. Finally, he is an accomplished student of politics and policy, which matters a lot to a company that does most of its business with the federal government. I have written a commentary for Forbes here.
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