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New CEOs are mostly middle-aged, with 51 average for executives

CEO Update analysis of nearly 200 new leaders found wide age range, though most topped 50

By Walt Williams and Mark R. Graham

The experience that comes along with growing older helps when landing a top job at an association or professional society, a CEO Update analysis has found.

CEO Update recently gathered the ages of nearly 200 CEOs who were hired by nonprofit organizations, business groups and professional societies in 2015. More than half the CEOs were age 50 or older, according to the data. One in three top executives were 55 or older.

Ages ranged from a low of 29 to a high of 70. As expected, younger individuals usually headed small organizations. At larger groups, those with revenue of more than $10 million, one in five new CEOs hired in 2015 were more than 60 years old.  That’s a big jump from CEOs who were hired to lead midsize groups, $5 million to $10 million in revenue, where just 8 percent were more than 60 years old.