In 2005 Keith Williams was named the 10th President and Chief Executive Officer of Underwriters Laboratories. As CEO, Keith has led a profound transformation at UL, guiding its journey from a not-for-profit company to a private, for-profit enterprise and more than doubling its enterprise value while staying true to its 121-year old safety mission. Guided by the clear strategic imperative to Lead in Science, Build Client Loyalty and be Highly Relevant, Keith has led a substantial diversification of UL’s business, laying the foundation for the company’s growth in the 21st century.
Through a series of successful acquisitions UL has expanded its traditional safety certification business to include a wide array of services for consumer products, clothing, footwear, wireless and mobile devices, electronic payment technologies, wind and solar energy, workplace safety training, occupational medicine, indoor air quality, furniture, supply chain management and online training services. Under Keith’s tenure, UL has also become a global leader in brand protection and a leading research institution into the science of safety. UL continues to proactively engage governments, public officials, universities and businesses around the world in accelerating the safe introduction of the latest science and technology into the market.
Keith spent the first 23 years of his career at GE Healthcare in a variety of general management and commercial leadership positions. Subsequent to GE he spent 8 years at Medtronic where he had roles as President – Neurological and Spinal Business, President – Asia Pacific, and Chief Quality and Regulatory Officer. While he was in Minneapolis he also led Strategic Planning for Medtronic.
Through his career Keith has lived 11 years in Asia with assignments in Beijing, Hong Kong, Singapore and Tokyo. Today Keith serves as Chairman of the US-ASEAN Business Council, Secretary Treasurer of the US-China Business Council and on the Boards of The Chicago Council on Global Affairs, World Business Chicago, and Opera Memphis. He also serves on the Board of Advisors for the Clark School of Engineering at the University of Maryland.