Hosted by the Association for Corporate Growth and Moderated by Mark Lonergan
This invitation-only event brought together a statured panel of current public company Board Chairs to discuss the very special nature of the Chairperson’s role. These panelists included: Penny Herscher (Chair — Lumentum), Chuck Kissner (Chair — Rambus), and Ned Barnholt (Chair — KLA).
At this invitation-only event, the topics discussed included:
- The special nature and content of the Chair’s role on a public company board of directors
- The relationships that the Chair is expected to cultivate: with the board, with senior management and even with investors
- The Chair’s role in building board evaluation programs – and then providing feedback to individual board members
- The role of Chair and board as younger generations are taking over roles on the senior leadership team.
- Communications with senior management from the Chair, and especially the Chair’s relationship with the CEO
- The Chair’s role in building board agendas, staying focused on strategic issues
- Differences between formal and informal communications from the Chair
- The Chair’s role in building a board culture
Penny Herscher, Board Chair
Penny Herscher is an experienced technology CEO, based in Silicon Valley, who took her first company, Simplex Solutions, public and then sold it to Cadence Design Systems in 2002. She was President & CEO of two technology companies, Simplex and FirstRain, over the last 20 years. She is a mathematician and marketeer, CEO and coach, who has deep expertise in leadership, enterprise GTM, governance and executive compensation, in M&A and public company structural change (spins), in leading large teams and building startups from the ground up. Ms. Herscher serves on four public company boards: Lumentum, Faurecia SA, PROS and Verint Systems and two private company boards: Delphix and Modern Health.
Penny holds a BA Hons, MA in Mathematics from Cambridge University in England.
Chuck Kissner, Board Chair
Chuck Kissner also serves as chief executive officer of Digital Pillars, a private information systems company. He has also served as Chairman of the Board of ShoreTel Inc. Prior, he served on the ShoreTel Nominating and Governance Committee, Audit Committee and Compensation Committee. He also served as Chairman of Aviat Networks and from June 2010 to July 2011, he was both Chairman and CEO. He was also a member of the board of Meru Networks, where he served on the Audit Committee and Compensation Committee. From 1995 to 2006, he served as Chairman and CEO of Stratex Networks, a global provider of wireless transmission solutions. Chuck previously was Vice President and General Manager of M/A‑COM, Inc., President and CEO of Aristacom International, Executive Vice President of Fujitsu Network Switching, Inc., and held a number of executive positions at AT&T. His not-for-profit board service includes the NPR Foundation, Angel Flight, Inc. and KQED Public Media.
Chuck holds a Bachelor of Science degree from California State Polytechnic University and a Master of Business Administration degree from Santa Clara University.
Ned Barnholt, Board Chair
Ned Barnholt has served as Chairman of the Board of KLA since October 2006. He previously served as President and Chief Executive Officer at Agilent Technologies, Inc., and as Chairman of the Board of Directors at Agilent. Previous to Agilent, Ned held critical roles at Hewlett-Packard, where he ultimately became Executive Vice President and General Manager of the Measurement Organization. He currently serves on the Board of Trustees of the Packard Foundation.
Ned possesses significant leadership experience, which includes matters particularly relevant to companies with complex technology and international business. Ned’s history as a board member of KLA provides him with an extensive knowledge of our business and industry, while bringing strong corporate governance expertise to the board.
Ned holds a bachelor’s degree and master’s degree in electrical engineering from Stanford University.
The event was held at Fleming’s in Palo Alto, on a beautiful heated and covered outdoor patio, for improved Covid safety.