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Meet the Team Guiding Amazon in the Post-Bezos Era

Bessie LiuOrg Charts
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Jeff Bezos stepped down as Amazon's CEO earlier this week. Image courtesy of Mike Mareen via Shutterstock.

Earlier this week, Jeff Bezos stepped down as Amazon's CEO, passing on the top position to the former head of Amazon Web Services, Andy Jassy.

Since stepping up, Jassy has already welcomed two additional executives to the 'S-team,' a group of senior leadership members at Amazon that spearhead decision-making in the company. The Org has taken a look into Amazon's exclusive 'S-team' in the post-Bezos era.

Amazon

Leading the pack as Amazon's CEO is Andy Jassy. Jassy was named as Bezos's successor in early February this year, taking on a challenging role as the multinational technology giant battles with labor advocates and ongoing antitrust investigations. The company veteran has been with Amazon since he graduated from Harvard Business School in 1997. Since then, he has led the company's most profitable business -- the cloud services.

"Andy is well known inside the company and has been at Amazon almost as long as I have," Bezos wrote in an email to his employees. "He will be an outstanding leader, and he has my full confidence."

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Andy Jassy. Image courtesy of Amazon.

A new addition to the 'S-team' is VP and Distinguished Engineer James Hamilton. Hamilton is not only a prominent engineer in the tech community, he also lives on a boat named Dirona that he sails from Seattle to Hawaii. Hamilton’s addition to the 'S-team' didn’t come as a surprise to many, as he balances out Jassy's perceived unfamiliarity with engineering. The University of Waterloo graduate started his career with IBM and was later poached by Microsoft, where he worked for over 11 years. He joined Amazon in December 2008 and is now responsible for keeping much of the world's internet services up and running.

Joining Hamilton as another new member in the exclusive executive team is VP of Worldwide Communications, Drew Herdener. Herdener has spent most of his career with Amazon, joining the company as a PR manager in 2003 and slowly making his way through the organization's ranks. The former journalism major was responsible for launching one of Amazon's first products -- the Kindle.

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Drew Herdener. Image courtesy of LinkedIn.

This will not be the first time Amazon's 'S-team' has been through a shakeup. In August last year, after the company announced that its CEO of Worldwide Consumer, Jeff Wilke, was stepping down, it welcomed three new faces to the executive team: Alicia Boler Davis, John Felton and Dave Treadwell.

Davis was the first woman of color to join Amazon's 'S-team,' known to be predominantly made up of white cisgender men. Currently serving as VP of Global Customer Fulfillment, Davis has extensive experience in customer experience and logistics. A graduate of Northwestern University, the Kelley School of Business and Rensselaer Polytechnic Institute, Davis has spent more than two decades of her career climbing the corporate ladder of General Motors, where she most recently held the title of EVP of Global Manufacturing and Labor Relations.

"Alicia and I were introduced by a mutual friend and agreed to have lunch. We hit it off right away. I was so impressed with her leadership experience, technical acumen and especially her dedication to the workers on the shop floor," Wilke wrote in an email. "I was sure we shared the same instincts. She's off to a great start running Global Customer Fulfillment."

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Alicia Boler Davis. Image courtesy of Amazon.

John Felton is another Amazon veteran, having been with the company for over 17 years. Currently, Felton serves as the SVP of Global Delivery Services. Felton started his career at General Electric, where he stayed for three years, according to his LinkedIn. He later left the company to pursue his MBA at Harvard Business school before joining Amazon shortly after.

"John started as a Senior Financial Analyst in Retail. He rose through the finance ranks to ultimately serve as the Head of Finance for Dave Clark's WW Operations team," Wilke said in an email. "In 2018, Dave asked John to jump from Finance to Operations. He did so enthusiastically, first leading Global Customer Fulfillment, and now Global Delivery Services, which includes our hugely successful AMZL expansion."

Dave Treadwell is a long-time friend of Wilke. The pair met during their freshman year in college at Princeton University. After that, the seasoned executive spent almost three decades with Microsoft, where he rose the ranks and became Corporate Vice President. After being presented with the opportunity to join Amazon as its VP of eCommerce Services, Treadwell has helped the company transition through complicated infrastructure changes.

As the Bezos era slowly comes to an end, it will be interesting to keep an eye on Amazon's "S-team" as it continues driving decision-making in the multinational technology company.

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