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Starbucks names Mellody Hobson chair of board of directors

Starbucks names Mellody Hobson chair of board of directors
Mellody Hobson on Wednesday was named the new non-executive chair of Starbucks' board of directors, becoming the first Black woman to hold the role for the company. Photo courtesy of Starbucks

Dec. 9 (UPI) -- Starbucks on Wednesday announced Mellody Hobson will become the first Black woman to serve as the non-executive chair of its board of directors.

Hobson, who has served on the board of directors for 15 years and is the co-CEO of Ariel Investments, will take on the role of chair in March, succeeding Myron E. Ullman, the company announced.

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"I am thrilled and honored to take on the role of chair," Hobson said. "Over nearly two decades, I have seen the company continue to elevate and transform its business -- adapting to various market environments and evolving customer trends. I look forward to working with the board and talented leadership team on accelerating our strategy supporting our valued partners and continuing to create significant value for all of our stakeholders."

Hobson also serves as a director of JPMorgan Chase and chair of After School Matters, a Chicago-based non-profit providing teens with high-quality after-school and summer programs.

"Mellody has been a trusted advisor to me and the company for more than 20 years," Starbucks founder Howard Schultz said. "She is a fearless leader defined by her grace and wisdom. She has long embraced the purpose of Starbucks and, along with the leadership team, will continue to reimagine Starbucks future through the foundation of its past."

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