After Elon Musk Twitter Trouble, Tesla Appoints Robyn Denholm as Chairman

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Ms Denholm, who has been a Tesla board member for almost five years, was named as Elon Musk's replacement as part of a securities fraud settlement with U.S. government regulators.

Denholm is now the Chair of Tesla's Audit Committee a role she will step away from until her initial 6 month notice period is complete. She was chief financial and operations officer at Juniper Networks for nine years, and worked at Sun Microsystems.

In a statement, Denholm said she believes in Tesla and looks forward to helping Musk and the company "achieve sustainable profitability and drive long-term shareholder value".

Executive recruiter Patricia Lenkov, however, said that Denholm likely was not the right pick for the job, arguing Tesla needed a figure with more experience dealing with strong founders.

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Ms Denholm already is on Tesla's board. A spokesperson at the company told CNBC that Denholm will receive 8,000 stock options each year and a cash retainer of $300,000 once she leaves Telstra.

Musk's successor, effective immediately, will be Robyn Denholm, a former Tesla board member and technology executive.

As part of Musk's settlement with the SEC, Tesla also has to monitor his Twitter posts if they relate to the firm. The financial regulator accused Musk of fraud and misleading investors, and fined him and the company $20m each.

Tesla weathered a rocky few months in the wake of Musk's tweets that he had "funding secured" for a deal, later scuttled, to take Tesla private.

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The Tesla Motors Club is one of the largest Tesla forums on the net and has always been a staple of the automaker's fanbase, acting as a community where owners, investors, and window-shoppers of the brand conjugate.

"But it does violate the spirit of the settlement, which was to change the culture of the board so there was a check on Musk's worst instincts", he added. Musk later tweeted that this was "incorrect". "Great respect. Very much look forward to working together", Musk tweeted early on Thursday.

A new chairman could conceivably rein in Musk or adjust Musk's role at the world's most drama-filled electric vehicle maker.

A union-affiliated investor group and officials representing major pension funds in four states have called on Tesla to go beyond the terms of the SEC settlement to fix its corporate governance issues. Even after the settlement was announced, Musk taunted the SEC, calling it the "Shortseller Enrichment Commission" before snidely praising it for "doing incredible work".

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