WASHINGTON – Tesla announced on Thursday the appointment of Robyn Denholm as the new chair of the board of directors to replace Elon Musk, who was forced to step down as part of an agreement with the US Securities and Exchange Commission (SEC).
Musk will retain the CEO post.
Denholm, 55, has been a member of the Tesla board since 2014 and is now the chief financial officer and head of strategy at Telstra, an Australian telecommunications company.
In September, Musk reached an agreement with the SEC to avoid going to trial over his Aug. 7 Twitter messages about his intention to take the electric-car manufacturer private.
The SEC determined that Musk’s messages, in which he said that he had secured funding to take Tesla private and that he would pay stockholders $420 per share, was a fraudulent act that temporarily inflated the value of the stock.
To avoid trial, Musk agreed to give up the chairmanship and pay a fine of $20 million, on top of a separate $20 million paid by Tesla.
Tesla, for its part, agreed to appoint two independent directors to the board and to establish a committee to oversee Musk’s communications.