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Baird names Booth as CEO


Baird has named Steve Booth as Chief Executive Officer (CEO) effective 1 January, 2016. Booth adds the CEO title to his existing role as President.

Baird succeeds Paul Purcell, who will continue as Chairman of the employee-owned financial services firm.
Purcell and Booth both joined Baird in 1994. Booth previously led Baird’s Investment Banking team and served as co-head of the firm’s Equity Capital Markets business since 2006. Purcell was named President of Baird in 1998, added the title of CEO in 2000 and also became Chairman in 2006. Under Purcell’s leadership, Baird once again became an employee-owned, independent firm following the firm’s buyback from Northwestern Mutual in 2004. The firm also embarked on a global expansion by adding talent and capabilities in the US, Europe and Asia
“I’ve had the pleasure of being a mentor, friend and business partner with Steve for more than 25 years,” says Purcell. “For the last several years, we’ve worked side-by-side to pursue Baird’s most important opportunities and to transition responsibilities. Baird is tremendously well positioned for the future with a fantastic team of leaders and associates. We are in great hands with Steve at the helm.”
Purcell will be an active Chairman, working closely with Booth and other Baird leaders to pursue the firm’s top growth opportunities and to recruit new talent.  He will also continue his deep involvement in Baird’s private equity business as well as his long-tradition of serving the community. Among other things, he will continue to chair the Notre Dame Mendoza School of Business Advisory Council, serve as Co-Chair of Teach For America in Milwaukee, and sit on the boards of Alverno College, the United Performing Arts Fund (UPAF), Metropolitan Milwaukee Association of Commerce, The Cristo Rey Network and Junior Achievement in Chicago. He will also co-chair UPAF’s 2016 Campaign.
“Under Paul’s leadership, we’ve focused on best serving our clients in an ever-changing, very competitive landscape,” says Booth. “A key part of Paul’s legacy is regaining our independence and again becoming an employee owned firm. Being privately held and associate-owned is our single most important competitive advantage because it enables us to make long-term decisions and investments to serve our clients and to create a great workplace.” 

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