Johnson Controls fires consultant after affair with CEO

Glendale-based Johnson Controls Inc. has fired a consulting firm after learning that one of its principals had an extramarital affair with JCI chief executive officer Alex Molinaroli, according to a report by Bloomberg News.

Molinaroli, 55, told his family about his affair with Kristin Ihle, a 45-year-old psychologist, in late May, according to the transcript of a court hearing in which Ihle unsuccessfully sought a restraining order against the CEO’s estranged wife, Bloomberg reported.

Ihle’s Milwaukee company, Lichter & Ihle, helps businesses with leader development and succession planning and had been working with Johnson Controls for years, according to the consulting firm’s website.

“The board reviewed the referenced relationship and determined that no conflicts of interest occurred,” Johnson Controls spokesman Fraser Engerman said in an e-mailed statement to Bloomberg. “To avoid any perception or potential future conflicts, management elected to terminate the consulting firm. Mr. Molinaroli continues in his role with full support of the board, and the company considers this matter to be closed.”

“Our firm reached an amicable separation with Johnson Controls and considers the matter closed,” Ihle’s company said in a statement provided by her lawyer, Tom Hayes, to Bloomberg.

Molinaroli succeeded Stephen Roell as CEO of Johnson Controls in October 2013 and has been restructuring the company this year.

To read the full Bloomberg news story, click here.

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