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7 June 2013

Oclaro’s chairman & CEO Couder retires; board members Dougherty made CEO and Peterson made chair

Oclaro of San Jose, CA, USA, which provides lasers and optical components, modules and subsystems for the optical communications, industrial, and consumer laser markets, says that chair & CEO Alain Couder has retired and that the board of directors has named board member Greg Dougherty as CEO, effective immediately. Also, board member Marissa Peterson has been elected as chair of the board.

“Since joining the company in 2007, Alain has played an important role in transforming the company from a small optical component company called Bookham into an industry leader,” comments Peterson. Couder first joined predecessor firm Bookham Inc as CEO in August 2007 and was elected chair of the board in July 2011.  He led Bookham through its merger with Avanex Corp in April 2009 to create Oclaro, and also led the firm through its merger with Opnext Inc in July 2012.  Prior to joining Oclaro, Couder was president & CEO of three private companies, a venture advisor to a venture capital company, the chief operating officer of Agilent Technologies, and held various positions over the years with Packard-Bell NEC, Groupe Bulle, Hewlett-Packard and IBM.

“Oclaro’s new CEO, Greg Dougherty, brings significant operational experience in the optical industry,” Peterson says. “We look forward to working closely with Greg as we navigate through the current challenging financial situation.”

Dougherty has been a board member since 2009, and brings to the CEO role substantial leadership, operations, sales, marketing and general management experience in the optical and laser industries, notes Oclaro, including previous roles as chief operating officer of JDSU and chief operating officer of SDL.

“Through its rich history of mergers and acquisitions, Oclaro has amassed an extensive technology and product portfolio,” comments Dougherty. “My focus will be to harness those powerful assets to their fullest potential, by accelerating efforts to simplify the company and strengthen our execution; and by focusing on developing and implementing a profitable operating model,” he adds. “My goal is to solidify our position as a leader in the optical industry and to be the preferred supplier to our customers around the world.”

Prior to Oclaro, Dougherty was a director of Avanex from April 2005 to April 2009, when Avanex and Bookham merged.  He has been a director of Picarro Inc, a manufacturer of ultra-sensitive gas spectroscopy equipment using laser-based technology, since October 2002., and was also its CEO from 2002 through 2003. Dougherty served on the board of directors of the Ronald McDonald House at Stanford from January 2004 until 2011.  From February 2001 until September 2002, he was chief operating officer of optical technology firm JDS Uniphase Corp. Previously, he was chief operating officer of SDL Inc from March 1997 to February 2001 when it was acquired by JDS. From 1989 to 1997, Dougherty was director of product management and marketing of Lucent Technologies Microelectronics’ Optoelectronics strategic business unit. He received a B.Sc. degree in Optics in 1983 from the University of Rochester

Peterson, who has served as an Oclaro board member since 2011, has extensive knowledge in operations, strategy and customer relations, as well as experience as a senior executive of a large, complex and well-respected technology company. She was formerly executive VP, worldwide operations, services and customer advocacy of Sun Microsystems Inc, until her retirement in 2006 after 17 years with the firm. 

Since August 2008, Peterson has been a director of healthcare provider Humana Inc, and is currently a member of its nominating and corporate governance and organization and compensation committees. Since August 2006, she has been a director of Ansell Ltd, a global public company listed on the Australia Stock Exchange, where she is currently a member of the audit committee and chair of the risk committee. In addition, Peterson is a director of Quantros Inc and a member of its audit committee and chair of its technology committee. She was previously a director of Supervalu Inc and the Lucile Packard Children’s Hospital at Stanford, and served on the board of trustees of Kettering University. Peterson is also a National Association of Corporate Directors Board Leadership Fellow. She has an M.B.A. from Harvard University, and an honorary doctorate of management and a B.S. in mechanical engineering from Kettering University.

Tags: Oclaro


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