National Instruments (NI) has announced that Alex Davern will step down as CEO on January 31, 2020, with current president and COO, Eric Starkloff, adding CEO to his title on February 1.

NI board chairman Michael McGrath explained the change:

“The board appointed Alex as CEO in 2016 to lead the transition from our founder, Dr. James Truchard. Over the past three years, he led NI and shaped a new core strategic vision, expanded our strategy to provide more complete systems for our customers, aligned the company to focus on growth industries and delivered record results. The board’s intention, after a successful transition from the founder, was to appoint the next CEO to lead the company to achieve this new vision.

McGrath said the board unanimously selected Starkloff, who was judged to be the most qualified person.

Davern will continue to serve on NI’s board and will remain as a strategic advisor to Starkloff through May. Beginning in the fall of 2020, Davern plans to teach at the University of Texas McCombs School of Business.

“I have thoroughly enjoyed being part of NI’s incredible success since joining in 1994, one year before the IPO, and I am confident the company is well positioned to deliver on its growth strategy. I am proud of the progress our employees made in significantly improving our operating results, and we have developed a team of highly experienced leaders. I have worked with Eric for many years and have great confidence that as CEO, he will continue to take NI forward to realize the company’s long-term potential.” — Alex Davern

“It has been an honor to work alongside Alex for the past 22 years and I want to thank him for his mentorship and his significant contributions to NI. I am confident in our strategy and our team, and I believe we are in a position of strength to deliver on our goals. I look forward to taking on the responsibility of CEO, as we connect our deep engineering experience and software-connected systems with our incredible customers who are taking on the complex challenges shaping humanity.” — Eric Starkloff