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Deere CEO to Address Clarke Graduates at 172nd Commencement

April 13, 2015

Clarke University is pleased to that announce Samuel R. Allen, chairman and chief executive officer of Deere & Company, will address graduates at the university’s 172nd Commencement on Saturday, May 9, on the Clarke campus.

Allen will also receive an honorary doctor of humane letters degree at the ceremony. 

“We are honored to have Sam Allen, chairman and chief executive officer of Deere & Company, as this year’s commencement speaker,” said Clarke President Joanne M. Burrows, SC, Ph.D. “Mr. Allen’s successful career with John Deere has spanned over 40 years, and includes an early career appointment in Dubuque. Mr. Allen has a wealth of experience in management, global operations, advanced technology, engineering and human resources. This is a wonderful opportunity for our graduates to learn from the CEO of a world-leading company. We look forward to the message Mr. Allen will share with us at commencement.”

Allen has held his current position since 2010. He was named president and chief executive officer in August 2009. He was appointed president and chief operating officer of the company and a member of the Deere & Company Board of Directors in June 2009.

Previously, he served as president, Worldwide Construction & Forestry Division, and was responsible for the global operations of John Deere Power Systems. He was also responsible for Deere’s intelligent mobile equipment technologies and for Deere’s advanced technology and engineering. He has served as a senior officer of the company since 2001, with additional responsibilities in human resources, industrial relations, and John Deere Credit’s global operations.

Since joining John Deere in 1975, Allen has worked in positions of increasing responsibility in the Consumer Products Division, Worldwide Construction & Forestry Division, John Deere Power Systems, and the Worldwide Agricultural Division, including managing operations in Latin America, China and East Asia, and Australia.

In addition, Allen serves as chairman of the Council on Competitiveness as of January 2010. He was appointed to Whirlpool Corporation’s board of directors in June 2010.

He is a 1975 graduate of Purdue University with a bachelor’s degree in industrial management and is a native of Sumter, S.C.