Patricia Russo

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to: navigation, search
Patricia F. Russo
Patricia Russo.jpg
Born Patricia Fiorello[1]
(1952-06-12) June 12, 1952 (age 65)[1]
Trenton, New Jersey[1]
Citizenship  United States
Alma mater Georgetown University
Lawrence High School[1]
Occupation Chairwoman of Hewlett Packard Enterprise
Known for former CEO of Lucent Technologies, Alcatel-Lucent
Board member of Hewlett Packard Enterprise, Arconic

Patricia F. Russo (born June 12, 1952, in Trenton, New Jersey is an American businessperson.[1] Russo is most widely known for having served as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) of Lucent Technologies, and its successor, Alcatel-Lucent, a large communications equipment manufacturer. She currently serves on the Board of Directors of General Motors, Merck & Co., and Arconic, Inc. She serves as Chairwoman of the nonprofit organization, Partnership at Prior to the split of Hewlett-Packard into two companies in 2015, Russo served as Lead Independent Director. She now serves as Chairwoman of Hewlett Packard Enterprise.[2]

Forbes Magazine rated Russo as 10th on its List of the World's 100 Most Powerful Women in 2006.[3]

Career at Lucent[edit]

Russo joined Lucent's predecessor in 1982.[4] In 1992, she became President of the Business Communications Systems division, moving in 1997 to become the Executive Vice President (VP) of Corporate Operations, and in 1999 to Executive VP and CEO of the Service Provider Networks Group.[4] She left in August 2000, after a reorganization; however, returned in January 2002 to become the CEO.[4] After "cutting costs and focusing on sales of wireless equipment, Russo was credited with returning Lucent to profitability in 2004, after three years of red ink."[3] However, profits that year "came largely through slashes in spending, cuts to retiree benefits, and reductions in research-and-development budgets that spurred protests."[5]

On April 2, 2006, it was announced that Russo would assume the CEO role of a new combined company resulting from the merger of the French communications company Alcatel and Lucent.[citation needed] This merger became effective on December 1, 2006. When Russo became the CEO of the combined company, Serge Tchuruk, the former CEO of Alcatel, remained as chairman.

The newly combined entity failed to turn a profit, and as a result, the company's management team resorted to rounds of restructuring and layoffs to address what were considered "challenging market conditions".[6] The board eventually decided to oust the management team, and on July 29, 2008, Russo, along with Alcatel-Lucent chairman Serge Tchuruk, announced that she would step down by the end of 2008, in a broad-reaching management restructuring.[7] Significant changes in the composition of the company's board were also announced. Alcatel-Lucent shares had lost more than 60% of their value since the merger.[7]

In the statement released by Alcatel-Lucent relating to her departure, Russo was quoted as saying, "The company will benefit from new leadership aligned with a newly composed board to bring a fresh and independent perspective that will take Alcatel-Lucent to its next level of growth and development in a rapidly changing global market.".[8] On September 2, 2008, she was replaced by Ben Verwaayen.

Other activities[edit]

Russo spent nine months as the Chief Operations Officer (COO) of Eastman Kodak, a position she left in January 2002 when she returned to Lucent to become their CEO.[4] She was also Chairwoman of Avaya, which was spun off from Lucent. Avaya, however, filed for bankruptcy in January 2017.[9]

On July 23, 2009, General Motors announced that Russo would be a member of the company's new Board of Directors.[10]


  1. ^ a b c d e "Patricia Russo (American businesswoman)". Encyclopædia Britannica. 
  2. ^ "Patricia Russo: Executive Profile & Biography - Businessweek". Retrieved 30 October 2012. 
  3. ^ a b #25 Patricia Russo, from the 2006 Forbes "List of the 100 Most Powerful Women".
  4. ^ a b c d Lucent's Next Leader, a January 2002 article from
  5. ^ Patricia Russo
  6. ^ Alcatel-Lucent Posts Big Loss, Plans Further Job Cuts
  7. ^ a b CEO and Chairman Out at Alcatel-Lucent
  8. ^ Alcatel-Lucent Chiefs to Step Down, The New York Times, July 29, 2008
  9. ^ "Avaya file for bankruptcy, 2017". 
  10. ^ "GM Names Its Government-Appointed Board Members". CNBC. 2009-07-23. Archived from the original on 2012-09-04. Retrieved 2009-08-02. 
Business positions
Preceded by
Daniel A. Carp (acting)
COO of Eastman Kodak
April 16, 2001 – January 6, 2002
Succeeded by
Daniel A. Carp (acting)
Preceded by
Henry B. Schacht (acting)
CEO of Lucent Technologies
January 7, 2002 – November 30, 2006
Merged into Alcatel-Lucent
New creation CEO of Alcatel-Lucent
December 1, 2006 – September 2, 2008
Succeeded by
Ben Verwaayen