Durk I. Jager, Procter & Gamble’s former Chairman of the Board, President and Chief Executive Officer, passed away Sunday, April 3.
Durk was the first CEO of P&G born outside North America. He led the Company during the volatile transition from the 20th to the 21st centuries.
Durk joined the Company in 1970 as a brand assistant in P&G Holland. He would later lead our business in Japan and Asia and then the U.S. In 1995, he was named P&G’s Chief Operating Officer and, in 1999, P&G’s CEO.
Durk believed passionately in the importance of breakthrough innovation and in the power of people. While leading our business in Japan, he knew the only way for P&G to win in that region was to truly understand the consumers, customers, culture and competitive environment there. As a result, P&G’s business in Japan grew from seven brands to 25 national or test market products in just six years.
Durk once said, “Thinking globally will make us better professionally, but if we learn to understand and appreciate other people's cultures, their thoughts, it will make each of us better, richer people.”