First Solar (Nasdaq:FSLR) is going through a lot of changes and restructuring.

And today it's reporting its Q1 earnings and new five-year plan. We'll report on that in a bit.

But first on First Solar's agenda today was the announcement that James Hughes has been appointed Chief Executive Officer.

Hughes succeeds Mike Ahearn, First Solar's founder and Chairman, interim CEO since Oct. 2011. Hughes joined First Solar in March as Chief Commercial Officer. Ahearn will continue in his role as Chairman of the Board.

According to a company release, "Hughes has nearly 20 years of experience in the global energy industry. Before joining First Solar, he served as the CEO of AEI, which owned and operated power distribution, conventional and renewable power generation, natural gas transportation and natural gas distribution businesses in 19 countries. Prior to that, he was President and Chief Operating Officer for Prisma Energy."

Just as interesting is the news that Dave Eaglesham, the CTO for the last six years, has retired and been replaced by Raffi Garabedian. Garabedian joined First Solar in 2008 as Director of Disruptive Technologies, and was promoted to Vice President of Advanced Technologies in 2010, overseeing the company's advanced research and development (R&D) operations in Santa Clara, Calif.

Garabedian earned a BSEE degree from Rensselaer Polytechnic University and an MSEE degree from the University of California at Davis. Prior to joining First Solar, he was founder and CEO of Touchdown Technologies, a semiconductor test equipment company. Prior to that, Garabedian worked in the semiconductor and microelectromechanical systems (MEMS) industries for over 15 years, developing new products ranging from automotive sensors to telecommunications switching systems, and holds more than 20 issued patents in these fields.