Illinois Tool Works CEO David Speer dies at age 61

Illinois Tool Works CEO Speer dies after long illness; succeeded by co. veteran E. Scott Santi

Associated Press

GLENVIEW, Ill. (AP) -- David Speer, the longtime chairman and CEO of Illinois Tool Works Inc., has died at the age of 61 after a lengthy illness.

Speer, who has been on medical leave since October, was replaced by E. Scott Santi as CEO, and Robert Morrison as nonexecutive board chairman, the company said in a statement on Sunday.

Speer joined the company in 1978 and held a number of sales, marketing and management positions. He was elected CEO in 2005 and became board chairman in 2006.

Santi, 51, also was named to the Glenview, Ill., company's board. He had been serving as president and chief operating officer since October, when he also was named acting chief executive because of Speer's medical leave. Santi joined ITW in 1983 and has spent his entire career with the company. He was named executive vice president in 2004 and vice chairman in 2008. He also is a director of W.W. Grainger Inc., a broad line industrial distributor.

Morrison, 70, has been acting nonexecutive chairman since October and has served as a director since 2003. He retired as vice chairman of PepsiCo Inc., and had served as chairman and CEO of The Quaker Oats Co. before its merger with PepsiCo.

ITW, which makes construction materials, welding equipment and restaurant supplies, celebrated its 100 year anniversary this year.

The company's shares closed Friday at up 12 cents at $58.87. They have traded in a 52-week range of $42.41 to $63.33.

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