First Solar Appoints Mark Widmar Its New CEO


Arizona-based panel manufacturer First Solar Inc. has appointed current chief financial officer (CFO), Mark R. Widmar, the company’s new CEO, effective July 1. He will also join the First Solar board of directors at that time.

The company says that as part of a transition plan, Widmar will succeed James A. Hughes, who will step down as CEO on June 30. Hughes will continue to support the company in an advisory role and remain on the board.

“Leadership succession planning has been a joint effort between Jim and the board,” says Michael J. Ahearn, First Solar’s chairman. “As we enter a new phase of growth and development for the company, we believe that Mark’s proven leadership and expertise make this an ideal time for him to take the helm. … We are grateful for Jim’s many contributions to First Solar, and we look forward to benefiting from his continued involvement as an advisor and director.”

Widmar has served as First Solar’s CFO since 2011 and as the company’s chief accounting officer from February 2012 through June 2015.

“I look forward to the opportunity to lead First Solar at this exciting time and build upon the success of the past,” says Widmar. “By utilizing our business model that emphasizes a disciplined and balanced approach to growth, liquidity and profitability, we are confident in our ability to deliver superior results to our shareholders.”

The company has appointed Alexander Bradley, First Solar’s vice president of treasury and project finance, to serve as interim CFO when Widmar enters his new role.

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