Jim Broadhead

April 9, 2024

James L. Broadhead, former Chairman and CEO of FPL Group, Inc. (now NextEra Energy, Inc.) died April 9, 2024. He was 88 years old.

Mr. Broadhead was born in New Rochelle, New York to Clarence (C.J.) and Mabel Broadhead, November 28, 1935. He graduated from New Rochelle High School and earned a Mechanical Engineering degree from Cornell University in 1958. There he led the singing group called “The Cayuga’s Waiters.” After working for Ingersoll-Rand Company, he graduated from Columbia Law School in 1963 where he was a National Scholar, International Fellow, and an Editor of the Columbia Law Review.

James (Jim) began his career at the New York law firm of Debevoise Plimpton, followed by St. Joe Minerals as President, President of GTE Telephone Operations, and a member of the GTE Board. He joined FPL Group in 1989 and retired in 2001. In 1995 his peers in the power industry voted him “CEO of the Year” in a poll by Financial World Magazine, and in 1997 FPL Group ranked first among electric and gas utilities in Fortune Magazine’s ” Most Admired Companies”.

Mr. Broadhead led a remarkable transformation of FPL Group when he took the helm as Chairman and CEO. In the words of a colleague, “Jim brought to bear on this situation a superb intellect, a genuine compassion for people, unflaggingly high ethical standards, and a dedication to doing the right thing, no matter how unpleasant or unpopular that might be. Under his leadership, the company embraced a new culture, focused on excellence in every aspect of its
business, that has enabled it to thrive and grow ever since.”

Mr. Broadhead served on the Board of Directors of Delta Airlines Inc., New York Life Insurance Company, The Brinks Company, Barnett Bank, and was a member of the Business Round Table and the Business Council. He was also Trustee Emeritus of Cornell University, past President of the Foundation for the Malcolm Baldrige National Quality Award, past Chairman of the Florida Olympic Committee, and past Chairman of Partners in Productivity, a state and
private partnership to improve efficiency and effectiveness of Florida’s government.

Jim will be remembered as a loving and devoted husband, father, and grandfather. He exhibited wise judgement, a diplomatic way, kindness and respect for all. Family memories include his guitar playing and singing, playing games in the back yard, tennis, planting gardens, building sandboxes and a tree house, coaching teams, and ‘trick or treating’—a life well-lived.

He is survived by his wife of fifty-six years, Sharon Rulon Broadhead and children Jeffrey T. Broadhead; Kristen Broadhead (Colin) Cashel and their children Charles, William, Katherine, and Thomas (Teddy); Carolyn Mary Broadhead and her children Heidi and Edward; and Catherine Lee Broadhead; and sister, Mary Caryl Elmore.

A Celebration of Life will be held for family and close friends at The Lost Tree Chapel in North Palm Beach at 11:00 a.m. on Friday, April 26, 2024. A luncheon will follow at the Lost Tree Club. Please RSVP 561-626-1840 by April 22. For those unable to attend it will be live streamed through “Lost Tree Chapel”.

In lieu of flowers, the family requests that anyone so inclined make a contribution in Mr. Broadhead’s memory to the James L. Broadhead Engineering Scholarship at Cornell University, Office of Donor Relations, 130 East Seneca St., Ste 400, Ithaca, NY 14850.