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Mercury Assigns Chairman Role to Interim CEO William Ballhaus, Adds Jana Partners’ Scott Ostfeld as Board Member

Mercury Systems (Nasdaq: MRCY) has named interim President and CEO William Ballhaus as the next chairman of its board of directors and appointed Scott Ostfeld, a managing partner at hedge fund Jana Partners, as an independent director.

The board also decided to reduce the number of seats from 11 to nine in a move that takes effect immediately before Mercury’s annual shareholders meeting, the defense electronics supplier said Thursday.

Ballhaus, who took on the interim leadership role after Mark Aslett stepped down as president and CEO on June 24, will succeed the retiring William O’Brien in the chairman post.

The company noted Ostfeld will serve on the board’s human capital and compensation and mergers and acquisitions and finance committees and support the search for a permanent CEO.

Ostfeld has nearly two decades of investment experience and has been with Jana Partners, which owns an 8 percent stake in Mercury, since 2006.

He previously worked at GSC Partners and Credit Suisse First Boston Corporation.

Mercury added that Mary Louise Krakauer will step down as board director while Howard Lance will serve as chair of the human capital and compensation committee.

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