Susan Schmitt Winchester leads Human Resources for Applied Materials and its more than 20,000 global employees. She has more than 30 years of experience in HR, providing executive leadership for the function most recently at Rockwell Automation and Kellogg Company. Her innovative mindset and commitment to excellence define her leadership style. She continually looks to meet today’s global business challenges with creative HR strategies that engage people, enable exceptional performance, and support a dynamic, inclusive corporate culture. Her passion for creating value for organizations is evident, whether she is strategizing future workforce imperatives or clarifying talent assessment and development models that will enable all individuals to contribute their best work.
While at Rockwell for 11 years, Susan set global strategies designed to strengthen leadership, build organizational capacity, and power the company’s business priorities. This work was consistently recognized by external organizations and significantly contributed to Rockwell Automation being recognized with the prestigious Catalyst Award in 2017 for the company’s innovative approach to building a culture of inclusion, and being named one of the “World’s Most Ethical Companies” for nine years.
Under her HR leadership, Rockwell’s inclusive practices earned a perfect score of 100 on the Human Rights Campaign Foundation’s annual Corporate Equality Index for LGBT Equality and the distinction of “Best Places to Work for LGBT Equality.”
Susan is a fellow of the National Academy of Human Resources — the highest professional honor for individuals in HR. She has lived, studied, and worked in the United States, France, and England. She earned her master’s degree in Industrial/Organizational Psychology from Illinois State University, and her bachelor’s from Albion College in Michigan. She also attended the University of Grenoble, France.
Contributing her expertise to developing future talent, she is a Leadership Advisory Board member for the Dean of Engineering at the University of Michigan serving as the Vice-Chair in the College of Engineering and is a member of the Diversity, Equality and Inclusion Advisory Council for the College of Engineering.
Her forthcoming book, with Martha Finney, is Healing At Work: The Adult Survivor’s Guide to Using Career Conflicts to Overcome Your Past and Build the Future You Deserve, will be published in early 2021.