The Board of Directors decided today, during its meeting of July 27Th 2016, to appoint Iris Knobloch, independent director, as Vice-Chairman of the Board and Lead Independent Director.
This appointment follows the resignation of Philippe Citerne, who, after serving twelve years on the Board of Directors and in the interests of good governance, informed the Board of his intent to terminate his tenure as director and Vice-Chairman – Lead Independent Director. The Board thanked Mr. Citerne warmly for his meaningful contribution to the Board and for his support to the Group during his tenure.
Commenting on the announcement, Sébastien Bazin, Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, said: "On behalf of myself and the rest of the Board of Directors, I would like to thank Philippe Citerne for his unwavering commitment, availability and professionalism during his tenure with the Board. Philippe, who in particular had to serve as Chairman of the Board, has played a key role over the last 12 years. As a director, he supported the Group during the key milestones of its growth, bringing his constant ability to think critically, strategically and open-mindedly. And I am pleased that Iris Knobloch will succeed him and assume those new duties for the benefit of all our shareholders."
To continue benefiting from Philippe Citerne's financial expertise and great knowledge of the Group, the Board of Directors has decided to appoint him as Censeur (non-voting director). In this capacity, he will participate to the meetings of the Board and of the Audit and Risks Committee with an advisory role.
At the same meeting, the Board decided to set up a fourth committee dedicated to Governance, Compliance and Corporate Responsibility. The new committee's main role will be to ensure that good corporate governance principles are properly applied and to prepare the Board of Directors' decisions pertaining to compliance, ethics and CSR. The other committees of the Board are the Audit & Risks Committee, the Commitments Committee and the Appointments & Compensation Committee. The list of the members of each committee and a summary description of their respective roles is available on the Group's website at accorhotels-group.com.
Iris Knobloch serves as director of Accor since April 25, 2013. She has a J.D. degree from Ludwig Maximilians Universität Munich and an L.L.M. degree from New York University. Ms. Knobloch has spent more than 18 years with Warner Bros. and the Time Warner Group, holding various different positions, and is currently President of Warner Bros. Entertainment France. Before beginning her career with Warner Bros., she was an attorney with Norr, Stiefenhofer & Lutz and O'Melveny & Myers in Munich, New York and Los Angeles.
Philippe Citerne has been a director of Accor since January 9, 2006. Prior to this, he served as the permanent representative of Société Générale on Accor's Supervisory Board. After graduating from École Centrale Paris and holding a number of positions in the French Finance Ministry, Mr. Citerne joined Société Générale in 1979, where he served as Vice-President of Economic Research, Vice President Finance and Vice-President Human Relations, before becoming a director, Co-Chief Executive Officer and Deputy Chief Executive Officer from 1997 to April 2009.