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Nikola appoints new board member

Replacement for departed founder Trevor Milton pending

Nikola Corp. (NASDAQ: NKLA) has appointed veteran finance executive Steve Shindler to its board of directors. He replaces a retiring member with close ties to founder Trevor Milton, who resigned from the company in September.

Shindler replaces Lonnie Stalsberg, who served on the board for three years. He was appointed chair of the audit committee.

Shindler most recently served as chief financial officer of VectoIQ Acquisition Corp. It is the special purpose acquisition company (SPAC) that brought Nikola public in a reverse merger in June.

“With his strong financial acumen, Steve’s talents will complement the diverse skills and experience of our current directors,” Board Chairman Steve Girsky said in a press release.

With his work at VectoIQ, Shindler is very familiar with Nikola’s business.

The Nikola board is interviewing candidates to replace Milton, who gave up his board seat as part of his resignation on Sept. 21. Milton holds more than 20% of the company’s shares. He agreed as part of his exit package to vote his shares as the board recommends for the next three years.

Investors in VectoIQ’s SPAC urged that Milton be replaced as CEO before the business combination closed in June. Former Worthington Industries President Mark Russell, who joined Nikola in February 2019,  became CEO in June when Milton became executive chairman.

Investors also wanted Milton’s father, Bill Milton, replaced, according to a Bloomberg report.

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Click for more FreightWaves articles by Alan Adler.

Alan Adler

Alan Adler is an award-winning journalist who worked for The Associated Press and the Detroit Free Press. He also spent two decades in domestic and international media relations and executive communications with General Motors.