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SEL names new chief executive officer

PULLMAN, Washington — Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories (SEL) has a new chief executive officer. Dave Whitehead, who joined the company as a hardware engineer in 1994 and most recently served as chief operating officer, is now the company’s highest-ranking chief executive officer under President Edmund O. Schweitzer III.

“Having worked closely with Dave for more than 25 years, I am proud to see him move into this role,” said Schweitzer. “He not only brings an incredible amount of technical knowledge, he also has the business acumen needed to guide SEL as we continue to grow and expand our services and offerings around the world.”

As chief operating officer, Whitehead focused on ensuring the divisions within the company were in alignment with SEL values and Principles of Operation. As CEO, he will take on additional strategic components. 

“While I will continue to set the overarching vision for SEL, in collaboration with the executive team,” said Schweitzer, “Dave will be responsible for translating the vision into effective corporate strategies that prioritize quality, innovation, service, profit and growth—in that order.”

For more than a decade, Whitehead led the company’s 800 person multidisciplinary R&D team. He has had a hand in the development of the steady stream of inventions to come out of SEL. An electrical engineer and prolific inventor, he has been awarded more than 73 patents around the world.

Whitehead is also a thought-leader within the electric power industry. He recently testified before the U.S. Senate on the topic of cybersecurity and industrial control systems, a subject he presents on regularly at industry conferences. He serves on the board of directors of SEL and Veracity Industrial Networks, is a senior member of IEEE and is the past chair of the IEEE Power & Energy Society Substations C6 Committee.

“I am incredibly honored and excited to take on this role and continue serve our customers, industry, communities and employees,” said Whitehead. “I am thankful for the experiences and opportunities I’ve had at SEL, especially getting to work closely with Ed Schweitzer all these years. Talk about a masterclass in leadership!”

About Schweitzer Engineering Laboratories
SEL invents, designs, and builds digital products and systems that protect power grids around the world. This technology prevents blackouts and enables customers to improve power system reliability, safety and cost. SEL, a 100 percent employee-owned company that is headquartered in Pullman, Washington, has manufactured products in the United States since 1984. SEL provides unmatched technical support, customer service and a 10-year worldwide warranty.