Susan Alexander

Former Chief Human Resources Officer, Sotheby’s
Greenwich, Connecticut

Susan Alexander built a personally rewarding career focused on talent and organizational culture, fields that are increasingly recognized by contemporary businesses as ways to foster innovation, gain market share, secure financial results and have societal impacts.

Susan was the catalyst and curator of a unique global culture at Sotheby’s, the international auction house. As the Chief Human Resources Officer (CHRO) of Sotheby’s for over 30 years she was the trusted advisor to four CEOs and shaped a loose association of art experts from 40 countries into a nimble, global team with a powerful brand identity. A seasoned leader through crisis, ambiguity, and change, Susan shepherded Sotheby’s through dramatic market cycles, an early online auction venture with Amazon, a federal antitrust investigation that resulted in felony convictions for the CEO and the Chairman, and the subsequent recovery and rebuilding of trust among clients and staff.

Early in her career as the youngest HR leader at AlliedSignal, she credits the experience of closing the Bendix headquarters post-acquisition for her keen appreciation for the capabilities of cross-generational and diverse individuals, along with the complexities and nuances of organizational culture.

Susan is a champion of talent development and has a reputation for identifying and celebrating the unique capabilities of others. She is particularly proud of the young people she has mentored throughout her career.

Susan grew up in the heartland of the United States and has a degree in music from Indiana University and an MBA from the University of Cincinnati. She serves on the board of the YMCA of New York City and advises global businesses on all things people and culture. She is the proud mother of twin boys and lives in Greenwich, Connecticut with her husband, Kurt. Susan enjoys theatre, jazz and classical music in New York City and on her travels around the globe.

Partner: Kurt Alexander