Director FAQs and Essentials

The Role of the Executive Chair

By NACD Staff


Chair and CEO

In brief: NACD defines the executive chair role as a temporary position fulfilled by the former combined CEO/chair who has relinquished the CEO title while remaining board chair and onboarding an incoming CEO. Creating this role is not standard practice for a CEO transition, with only 3 percent of respondents to the 2016–2017 NACD Public Company Governance Survey utilizing the role. However, the board may consider installing an executive chair, should the company be undergoing a period of stress or unique circumstances in which the incoming CEO needs additional guidance.

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