Mellody Hobson will be stepping into the role as vice chair of Starbucks following the departure of Howard Schultz on June 26. The president of Chicago based investment firm Ariel Investments has been on the board of Starbucks for over a decade. Hobson has also served on the board of directors for DreamWorks Animation, Estee Lauder, and Groupon.
The Chicago native got her start in the 90s at Ariel investments right after college. She continued to climb the ladder at Ariel starting as an intern. She went on to become the company’s vice president of marketing, senior vice president and eventually president of the firm.
Hobson has been making power moves since her career started. She manages one of the largest African-American owned money management and mutual fund companies in the United States, and in 2017, she became the first African- American woman to head the Economic Club of Chicago.
Hobson is also an advocate for community outreach and financial literacy.
The former CEO of J.C. Penney, Myron E. Ullman, will take over as Starbucks’ chair.
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