William J. Rothwell, Ph.D., SPHR, is President of Rothwell and associates, inc., a full-service consulting firm that offers services in Succession Planning and Management. He is also Professor of Human Resource Development on the University Park campus of The Pennsylvania State University. As a consultant, he has worked with over 30 multinational corporations. As an academic, he heads up the #2 ranked graduate program in HRD in the USA.
Before arriving at Penn State, he was previously Assistant Vice President and Management Development Director for The Franklin Life Insurance Co., a wholly-owned subsidiary of a Fortune 48 corporation. Before that, he was Training Director for the Illinois Office of the Auditor General.
Dr. Rothwell was National Thought Leader for a Linkage-DDI sponsored study of 18 multinational corporations in 2001 that examined corporate best practices in succession planning and management. His bestselling book Effective succession planning: Ensuring leadership continuity and building talent from with, 2nd ed. (New York: Amacom, 2001) is regarded by some as the "corporate bible" on succession management practices. He is also author of such related books as Building in-house leadership and management development programs (Westport, CT: Quorum Books, 1999), The competency toolkit, 2 vols. (Amherst, MA: Human Resource Development Press, 2000), and The action learning guidebook (San Francisco: Jossey-Bass, 1999). He has also authored, coauthored, edited or coedited some 50 books and has consulted on Succession Planning and Management with a wide array of organizations in business, government, and nonprofit settings both in the U.S.A. and internationally.