The managing board of enterprise open-source software company Red Hat has elected a retired U.S. Army officer, General Henry Hugh Shelton, to serve as chairman, the company announced Monday. Shelton takes the place of Matthew Szulik, who was the former CEO of Red Hat.
"General Shelton possesses the right combination of leadership, experience and industry knowledge to help guide Red Hat toward achieving its future goals," said Red Hat CEO Jim Whitehurst, in a statement.
Shelton has had a long and notable career in the Army, spanning four decades of service. From 1997 until 2001, he served two terms as the chairman of the Defense Department's Joint Chiefs of Staff, which is the highest-ranking U.S. military position, one that advises the U.S. president. During Vietnam war, Shelton served two tours in that country, the first with the 5th Special Forces Group and the second with the 173rd Airborne Brigade. He has received numerous military awards, as well as the Congressional Gold Medal.
Shelton has been a member of the Red Hat board since 2003, having served as director as well as on the audit and compensation committees. Szulik stepped down from the board on Aug. 12, at the annual shareholders meeting. He announced his departure in May.
In addition to providing guidance for Red Hat, Shelton also serves on the board of directors for beer maker Anheuser-Busch. He has also served on the boards for military IT integrators CACI International and Anteon.
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