Ellen J. Kullman

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Ellen J. Kullman
Ellen Kullman JPS2010 01 14 crop.jpg
Kullman at the Joseph Priestley Society in 2010
Ellen Jamison

(1956-01-22) January 22, 1956 (age 63)
Wilmington, Delaware
ResidenceWilmington, Delaware
Alma materTufts University
Northwestern University
OccupationBusiness executive
Home townWilmington, Delaware
Salary$11.3 million (2010, including salary, bonuses and stock options)[1]
TitleFormer president, Chair and Chief Executive Officer of DuPont
Board member of
Spouse(s)Michael Kullman
Parent(s)Joseph Jamison
Margaret Jamison

Ellen J. Kullman (born January 22, 1956) is a United States business executive. She was formerly Chair and Chief Executive Officer of E. I. du Pont de Nemours and Company ("DuPont") in Wilmington and is a former director of General Motors. Forbes ranked her 31st of the 100 Most Powerful Women in 2014.[2] On October 5, 2015, DuPont announced that Kullman would retire on October 16, 2015.[3]

Early life[edit]

Kullman was born Ellen Jamison in Wilmington, Delaware,[4][5] the younger daughter of Joseph and Margaret Jamison.[4] She has two older brothers and an older sister.[4] Kullman attended Tower Hill School in Wilmington and then studied mechanical engineering at Tufts University, where she received her bachelor's degree in 1978.[4] In 1983, she received a master's degree in management from Kellogg School of Management at Northwestern University.[4]


Kullman at the annual meeting of the World Economic Forum in Davos, Switzerland, January 30, 2009

Kullman began her business career at General Electric and joined DuPont in 1988 as marketing manager in the company's medical imaging business.[4][5] In her later role as executive vice president she was responsible for four of DuPont's business platforms as well as leading the company's growth in markets outside the USA.[4]

DuPont's board of directors elected Kullman President and a director of the company with effect from October 1, 2008 and Chief Executive Officer with effect from January 1, 2009.[6] She is the nineteenth executive, and the first woman, to lead the company in its 212-year history.[7] Fortune magazine named Kullman fifteenth in its list of the world's fifty most powerful women for 2008,[8] and fifth on the list for 2009[9] and 2010.[10] In 2014 she was ranked as the 31st most powerful woman in the world, up from 42nd in 2013.[2] The Wall Street Journal named her eighth on its 2008 list of "Women to Watch".[11]

Kullman was a director of General Motors from 2004-2008[12][13] and was elected to the board of trustees of Tufts University in 2006.[14]

On October 30, 2009, DuPont announced that its board of directors had elected Kullman as Chair of the company effective December 31, 2009.[15][16]

She is a member of the Executive Committee of The Business Council for 2011 - 2013.[17]

On June 6, 2013 the US-China Business Council announced that Kullman had been elected as its Chair.[18]

Kullman's retirement was announced by DuPont on October 5, 2015 (effective October 16, 2015) following a battle with activist investor Nelson Peltz and Trian Fund Management, his investment firm. Peltz sought 4 board seats and argued that DuPont needed to cut costs and meet financial targets, but had lost a shareholder vote earlier in the year.[3]

On December 21, 2016, Kullman joined the Board of Directors of The Goldman Sachs Group, Inc. as an independent director.[19]

Awards and honors[edit]

External video
“George Washington Carver Award acceptance speech”, Ellen Kullman, Biotechnology Innovation Organization

Kullman has been awarded Sellinger's Business Leader of the Year.[20] In 2014, she was given the George Washington Carver Award for innovation in industrial biotechnology. She is the first woman to receive the award.[21] In 2015, Kullman received the International Palladium Medal from the Société de Chimie Industrielle (American Section),[22] the Engineering Leader of the Year Award,[23] the Pete du Pont Individual Freedom Award,[24] and Delaware's Order of the First State.[25] She is also a recipient of the Msgr. Thomas J. Reese Award from Catholic Charities.[26]

On March 26, 2017, Kullman's alma mater Tufts University announced they would be awarding her an honorary degree. In the weeks leading up to graduation, this was met by University-wide outrage.[27][28] During her speech at the University's graduation, hundreds of students protested with signs and turned their backs to her.[29]

Personal life[edit]

Kullman is married to Michael Kullman and they have three children.[4][5]


  1. ^ Yahoo! Finance (March 18, 2011). "DuPont CEO got $11.3M pay package in 2010". finance.yahoo.com. Archived from the original on March 19, 2011. Retrieved March 18, 2011.
  2. ^ a b "The World's 100 Most Powerful Women". www.forbes.com. Forbes. Retrieved 24 June 2014.
  3. ^ a b de la Merced, Michael J. (5 October 2015). "DuPont Chief Executive Ellen Kullman to Retire". Dealbook. New York Times. Retrieved 5 October 2015.
  4. ^ a b c d e f g h Eder, Andrew. "A new era dawns at DuPont Co". delawareonline.com. Archived from the original on 2008-09-29. Retrieved 2008-09-24.
  5. ^ a b c "Biographical information on Ellen Kullman". www.webcitation.org. Archived from the original on 2008-09-29. Retrieved 2009-02-16.
  6. ^ "DuPont: Investor Center – News Release". phx.corporate-ir.net. Archived from the original on 2008-09-29. Retrieved 2008-09-23.
  7. ^ "Bloomberg.com: News". www.bloomberg.com. 2008-09-23. Archived from the original on 2008-09-29. Retrieved 2008-09-24.
  8. ^ "50 Most Powerful Women – Ellen Kullman (15) – FORTUNE". cnn.com. Archived from the original on 2008-10-01. Retrieved 2008-10-01.
  9. ^ "50 Most Powerful Women – Ellen Kullman (7) – FORTUNE". cnn.com. 2009-09-15. Archived from the original on 2011-03-11. Retrieved October 1, 2010.
  10. ^ "50 Most Powerful Women – Ellen Kullman (7) – FORTUNE". cnn.com. 2010-09-30. Archived from the original on 2011-03-11. Retrieved October 1, 2010.
  11. ^ Crittenden, Michael R. (2008-11-10). "Women to Watch". online.wsj.com. Wall Street Journal. Archived from the original on 2008-11-10. Retrieved 2008-11-10.
  12. ^ "WebCite archive of General Motors: Investors: Corp Governance: Board of Directors as of 09/29/08". www.webcitation.org. Archived from the original on September 29, 2008. Retrieved 2009-02-22.
  13. ^ "DuPont president resigns from GM board". www.marketwatch.com. MarketWatch. Archived from the original on 2008-10-25. Retrieved 2008-12-11.
  14. ^ "Trustee Information". www.tufts.edu. Office of the Trustees – Tufts University. Archived from the original on 2008-11-18. Retrieved 2008-11-18.
  15. ^ "DuPont names Ellen Kullman as chair - MarketWatch". www.marketwatch.com. Archived from the original on 2009-11-06. Retrieved 2009-11-06.
  16. ^ "DuPont's Board of Directors Appoints Ellen Kullman Chair". www.prnewswire.com. Archived from the original on 2009-11-06. Retrieved 2009-11-06.
  17. ^ The Business Council, Official website, Executive Committee Archived July 21, 2013, at the Wayback Machine
  18. ^ U.S.-China Business Council Elects DuPont Chair and CEO Ellen Kullman as Chair – Yahoo! Finance
  19. ^ "Ellen Kullman Joins Goldman Sachs Board of Directors". Goldman Sachs. December 21, 2016. Retrieved December 23, 2016.
  20. ^ "DuPont CEO Ellen J. Kullman named Sellinger's Business Leader of the Year". Loyola University Maryland. Retrieved 21 February 2013.
  21. ^ "BIO Announces DuPont CEO Ellen Kullman to Receive the 2014 BIO George Washington Carver Award". Biotechnology Innovation Organization. March 13, 2014. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  22. ^ "Ellen Kullman, Chair of the Board and Chief Executive Officer, DuPont, to be Awarded the 2015 International Palladium Medal". DuPont. October 7, 2014.
  23. ^ "Ellen Kullman Awarded 2015 Engineering Leader of the Year Award". Drexel University. February 26, 2015. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  24. ^ "Ellen Kullman 2015 Pete du Pont Individual Freedom Award Recipient". The Pete du Pont Freedom Foundation. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  25. ^ "Ellen Kullman awarded state's highest honor". Delaware Business Times. 2015-12-08.
  26. ^ "Catholic Charities to honor Ellen Kullman with Msgr. Reese Award at April 2 tribute dinner". The Dialog. January 21, 2016. Retrieved 3 April 2017.
  27. ^ https://tuftsdaily.com/opinion/editorial/2018/04/03/editorial-ellen-kullman-bizarre-choice-commencement-speaker/
  28. ^ https://tuftsdaily.com/features/2018/04/17/students-faculty-respond-choice-ellen-kullman-commencement-speaker/
  29. ^ https://www.bostonglobe.com/metro/2018/05/20/tufts-graduates-protest-former-dupont-ceo-during-commencement-speech/fB7ZE81Td2yluVhkw4RNnJ/story.html

External links[edit]