Albany CEO Bill Higgins to leave

  • After about three years in the position
  • Search for a successor
  • Higgins said 63 words

(exechange) — Rochester, New Hampshire, March 13, 2023 — Bill Higgins, chief executive of Albany, is set to leave his position. As announced by Albany International Corp. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Monday, March 13, 2023, A.William (Bill) Higgins will leave his post as chief executive officer at the manufacturer of engineered components, after about three years in the role, effective when his successor is in place.

The average tenure of CEOs who announced their departure over the past 12 months was 8.1 years. This is according to data collected by CEO-exit research firm exechange.

exechange tracks CEO departures at the 3,000 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S., examines the reasons CEOs leave and determines the Push‑out Score™, a measure of pressure on departing chief executives on a scale of 0 to 10.

Albany will undertake a search for a successor.

No reason given

In the announcement, Albany did not explicitly explain the reason for the move.

The top three reasons cited in corporate announcements for CEO departures over the past 12 months are performance issues (26.8% of cases), implementation of a planned succession (16.9%) and the statement that the time was right for a change (9.5%), according to exechange data. Other motives given for leadership changes included the outgoing CEO’s wish to pursue other opportunities (5.5% of cases), personal reasons (3.7%) and conduct issues (2.2%). Rather rarely stated reasons are career change (2.2% of cases), health problems (1.5%), disagreement (1.2%), death (1.2%) and the desire for more time with family (0.9%). Sometimes, more than one reason was given. In 28.3% of cases, no reason was given.

Precise information regarding Bill Higgins’s future plans was not immediately available.


Albany said: “President and CEO A. William Higgins has notified the Board of Directors of his desire to retire.”

Generally, retirements are seen as formally voluntary departures. Still, CEOs may also be pressured to accelerate their retirement plans. In fact, 35% of the time “retire” was used in CEO departure announcements over the past 12 months, the departing chief executives received Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5, indicating elevated pressure.

Share price increase since January 2020

The announcement follows an increase in Albany International Corp.’s share price of 21% since January 2020. January 2020 is the month in which Higgins’s tenure as CEO began.

In the position of CEO since 2020

Bill Higgins became CEO of the Company in 2020.

Higgins has been President and CEO of the Company since January 20, 2020.

He previously served as Chairman of the Board from February 2019 until January 20, 2020.

Higgins currently serves as a director of Kaman Corporation, a diversified aerospace, defense, industrial and medical company, where he is a member of the finance, compensation and corporate governance committees.

He previously served on the board of Bristow Group Inc., a global industrial aviation services provider, from 2016 until October 2019. Bristow filed a pre-negotiated Chapter 11 plan of reorganization in May, 2019, from which it successfully emerged in October, 2019.

He served as Chairman, Chief Executive Officer and President of CIRCOR International, Inc. from 2008 to 2012.

Prior to March 2008, Higgins held the offices of President and Chief Operating Officer and Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer of CIRCOR.

Prior to joining CIRCOR in 2005, he spent thirteen years in a variety of senior management positions with Honeywell International and AlliedSignal.

63 words by Bill Higgins

In announcing the leadership change, Bill Higgins said 63 words.

“Strong leadership at all levels”

Bill Higgins stated: “I am proud to have led Albany during the past three years. I will work hand-in-hand with the Board of Directors and continue to lead the management team to ensure continued success of Albany and a seamless handoff to my successor. The company is in great hands, with strong leadership at all levels, as well as opportunities for continued growth and cash generation.”

Over the past 12 months, 25% of all outgoing CEOs remained silent in the departure announcement, according to data compiled by exechange. Departing CEOs who did make a statement said an average of 109 words. The longest statement was 510 words. The shortest statement was 23 words. Leadership transitions in which departing CEOs provide conspicuously short, excessively long or no explanations for their move are statistically associated with elevated pressure and show an increased incidence of Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5.

38% of CEOs are forced out or fired

When CEO departures are announced, exechange determines the Push-out Score on a scale of 0 to 10 to assess how likely it is that the chief executive was pushed out or felt pressure to leave the position, with 0 being most likely a voluntary move and 10 being most likely a forced exit. Anything over a 5 indicates that there are valid reasons to believe an executive may have been pushed out.

Of the 325 CEO departures in the Russell 3000 Index evaluated over the past 12 months (March 13, 2022, to March 12, 2023), the average Push-out Score was 5.9, according to exechange data. References to conduct issues, disagreements and irregularities lead to the highest Push-out Scores. When performance issues, time with family or personal reasons were cited as departure reasons, the average Push-out Scores were also significantly elevated.

Around 38% of the CEO departure events from the past 12 months received Push-out Scores of 8 or higher.

In other words, in the past 12 months, three in eight departing CEOs were forced out or fired.

Push-out Score for Bill Higgins’s move determined

The Push-out Score regarding Bill Higgins’s move is explained point by point in the exechange report.

exechange reached out to Albany and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 12.2023 ($).