The board of directors of Deere & Co. has elected John May as its new CEO, effective Nov. 4. May, who was elected a member of the board effective immediately, has served as president and chief operating officer since April of this year.
Current chairman and CEO Samuel Allen will continue as chairman of the board after he steps down from the CEO position. May becomes the 10th chief executive in the company’s 182-year history.
“John’s record of success and proven leadership skills make him highly qualified to lead Deere and guide its success in the year’s ahead,” said Allen. “His experience in precision agriculture, information technology, and overseas operations will be instrumental in driving the company’s digitalization journey and extending its success in agricultural and construction equipment.
May, 50, joined Deere in 1997 and became part of the senior management team in 2012 as president, agricultural solutions and chief information officer. Last year he was named president, worldwide agriculture and turf division, with responsibility for the Americas and Australia, the global harvesting, turf and utility, and crop care platforms, and intelligent solutions group. Earlier in his career, May headed the company’s China operations, served as factory manager at the Dubuque (Iowa) Works and was vice president of the turf and utility platform.
May has a bachelor’s degree in health information management from the University of New Hampshire and a master’s degree in business administration from the University of Maine.