chair·​man | \ ˈcher-mən How to pronounce chairman (audio) \
plural chairmen

Definition of chairman

 (Entry 1 of 2)

1a : the presiding officer of a meeting, organization, committee, or event
b : the administrative officer of a department of instruction (as in a college)
2 : a carrier of a sedan chair


chairmaned or chairmanned; chairmaning or chairmanning

Definition of chairman (Entry 2 of 2)

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Other Words from chairman


chairmanship \ ˈcher-​mən-​ˌship How to pronounce chairmanship (audio) \ noun

Examples of chairman in a Sentence

Noun the chairman of the airline company the chairman called the meeting to order
Recent Examples on the Web: Noun Ford’s executive chairman Bill Ford appeared on the Today Show to announce that the company is working with 3M and GE to speed up the production of masks, face shields, respirators, and ventilators. Roberto Baldwin, Car and Driver, "Automakers Step Up to Challenge of Helping in Coronavirus Pandemic," 24 Mar. 2020 On Tuesday, Japan’s organizing committee said that its chairman, Yoshiro Mori, would not travel to Greece for the Olympic torch handover ceremony because of concerns about the spread of the virus in Europe. New York Times, "Will the Olympics Go On? Japan’s Businesses Would Like to Know," 18 Mar. 2020 The company was created with help from Apple cofounder Steve Jobs, who provided the capital to buy out LucasFilm’s computer animation technology and became Pixar’s chairman. Tom Simonite, Wired, "Pixar Pioneers Win the Computing Industry's 'Nobel' Prize," 18 Mar. 2020 Board member Bobby Martin has been promoted to the role of executive chairman, succeeding Robert Fisher, who has been serving as the interim chief executive of Gap Inc. Shwanika Narayan,, "Gap Inc names Old Navy chief as its new CEO," 5 Mar. 2020 Courtesy of ClassPass Somewhere along the way, Kadakia stepped down as CEO, taking on the role of executive chairman and handing the reigns to longtime business partner Fritz Lanman. Megan Ditrolio, Marie Claire, "Payal Kadakia Made ClassPass into the Decade's First Billion-Dollar Company," 5 Mar. 2020 Its chairman and founder is Wesley R. Edens, who is also a co-owner of the Milwaukee Bucks. Will Englund, Washington Post, "Trump wants to lift the ban on transporting liquefied natural gas on trains. Opponents say it’s a risk.," 3 Mar. 2020 Among the luminaries in attendance were Sheikha Al-Mayassa bint Hamad bin Khalifa Al-Thani (the sister of Qatar’s ruling emir) and Chelsea Clinton, coauthor of and the vice-chairman of the Clinton Foundation. Ian Malone, Vogue, "Alice + Olivia Hosted Its Second Female Empowerment Dinner," 27 Feb. 2020 In 2015, Leakey agreed to return to the Kenya Wildlife Service as its chairman of the board, appointed by President Uhuru Kenyatta. Jon Lee Anderson, The New Yorker, "Can the Wildlife of East Africa Be Saved? A Visit with Richard Leakey," 20 Feb. 2020 Recent Examples on the Web: Verb With board of trustees chairman J. David Grissom preferring to wield his influence off-camera, U of L fans are looking to you for leadership. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville's new president has a hard job ahead of her, but it's not impossible," 7 Apr. 2018 The new procedure appears to reflect the desire of board of trustees chairman J. David Grissom and interim President Greg Postel to consolidate power. Tim Sullivan, The Courier-Journal, "Louisville shifts final approval of coaches from athletics to board of trustees," 27 Mar. 2018 Interim university President Postel is handling the interviewing process, with input from board of trustees chairman J. David Grissom. Jeff Greer, The Courier-Journal, "Sources: Vince Tyra surfaces as likely U of L interim AD; 2 internal candidates also finalists," 3 Oct. 2017 Board of trustees chairman J. David Grissom said the board was unanimous in its support of Postel suspending Jurich and Pitino, though it was later revealed Grissom's one-on-one polling may have violated state law. Jeff Greer, The Courier-Journal, "This is how Tom Jurich could be reinstated as University of Louisville's athletic director," 5 Oct. 2017

These example sentences are selected automatically from various online news sources to reflect current usage of the word 'chairman.' Views expressed in the examples do not represent the opinion of Merriam-Webster or its editors. Send us feedback.

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First Known Use of chairman


1592, in the meaning defined at sense 1a


1888, in the meaning defined above

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Time Traveler for chairman

Time Traveler

The first known use of chairman was in 1592

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Statistics for chairman

Last Updated

27 Mar 2020

Cite this Entry

“Chairman.” Dictionary, Merriam-Webster, Accessed 1 Apr. 2020.

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More Definitions for chairman


How to pronounce chairman (audio)

English Language Learners Definition of chairman

: the person (especially a man) who is in charge of a meeting, committee, or event
: the person who is in charge of a company or organization


chair·​man | \ ˈcher-mən How to pronounce chairman (audio) \
plural chairmen\ -​mən \

Kids Definition of chairman

2 : a person who is in charge of a company

Other Words from chairman

chairmanship \ -​ˌship \ noun

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