NEW YORK—The New York Stock Exchange, still reeling from the controversy that forced the departure last year of chief executive Richard Grasso, has hired Margaret Tutwiler as executive vice president for communications and government relations, responsible for communications, advertising, marketing, and government relations.
Tutwiler joins after serving less than a year as the U.S. Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy & Public Affairs, responsible for managing the campaign for “hearts and minds” in the war against terrorism and the occupation of Iraq.
She replaces Robert Zito as the NYSE’s senior communications executive. Zito, who spent a total of 14 years at the Big Board and took over as communications chief in 1994, was closely linked to Grasso, particularly as the Exchange’s handling of questions over the former CEO’s compensation came under fire. He is the latest in a long line of senior figures from the Grasso era to exit the Exchange as new CEO John Thain sets about assembling his own management team.
“Ambassador Tutwiler brings a wealth of experience and talent to the NYSE,” said Thain. “She’s established a reputation for drive, candor, and focus in both the public and private sectors. The Exchange has an important mission to fulfill and Ambassador Tutwiler will play a central role in helping us achieve our objectives.”
Tutwiler’s departure from the public diplomacy realm, meanwhile is seen by some observers as a setback, particularly given the timing, as the U.S. deals with photographs showing American soldiers torturing Iraqi prisoners and an opinion poll showing the majority of Iraqis would like the U.S. occupation force to leave immediately.
She will leave on June 30, when the authorities plan to transfer sovereignty to Iraqis. The post may then remain vacant until well into next year, given the difficulty of finding a replacement in the short period before the November election.
Says Tutwiler, “I have been privileged to serve President Bush and his administration for over three years. The President and Secretary Powell have my deepest gratitude for the opportunity to have served. I am pleased to be joining John Thain and his team at the New York Stock Exchange, and I look forward to the challenge of working for this unique—and uniquely American—institution.”
Tutwiler has been U.S. Undersecretary of State for Public Diplomacy and Public Affairs since December 2003. She served as U.S. Ambassador to Morocco from July 2001 to August 2003 and has also been an Assistant to the President (2001, 1992-3), Assistant Secretary of State for Public Affairs (1989-92), Assistant Secretary of the Treasury for Public Affairs (1985-89), and Assistant to the White House Chief of Staff (1981-85).