New Carlson CEO Trudy Rautio
New Carlson CEO Trudy Rautio


Carlson has appointed Trudy Rautio as the fifth Chief Executive Officer in the company’s 74-year history following the resignation overnight (Aug 20) of popular CEO Hubert Joly.

Rautio has been with the company for the past 15 years and has served the last eight as Chief Financial Officer and Executive Vice President. She is also on the board of Carlson Wagonlit Travel and the majority Carlson owned Rezidor Hotel Group.

Carlson’s chair of the board, Marilyn Carlson Nelson welcomed Rautio’s appointment and praised Joly’s hard work during his tenure as CEO.

“With Hubert Joly’s leadership through some very difficult financial times, Carlson is on strong financial footing,” Nelson said. “Hubert was hired as Carlson’s first non-family CEO and we are grateful for his contributions to our company.

Joly was the mastermind behind Carlson’s ‘Ambition 2015’ plan, one Nelson said would remain on track.

“The Carlson board of directors is extremely pleased to continue the strong momentum that we have been building through Ambition 2015,” she said.

“Carlson is ahead of plan and Trudy is the ideal leader to continue our robust strategies for continued success and profitability.

Resigned: Hubert Joly

“Trudy has the full confidence and support of the Carlson family and Board of Directors.

“We are poised to accelerate our growth and Trudy has the experience, leadership and vision for Carlson’s exciting next chapter,” Nelson said.

Rautio said she was looking forward to the challenge of running one of the world’s largest hospitality companies.

“I am honored to accept the leadership role of this dynamic company as Carlson progresses through its Ambition 2015 goals,” she said. “I am appreciative of the support given to me by the board of directors and the members of the Carlson family and am excited about the future opportunities for each of our businesses.

“I am also grateful for the support of my colleagues on the current leadership team and look forward to working with our employees, partners and stakeholders around the world.”

Rautio is the company’s second female President and CEO, with the first having been board chair and co-owner Nelson.


James Wilkinson

Editor-In-Chief, Hotel Management

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