Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New CEO Will Take the Helm at St. Joe; COO "Britt" Greene Will Succeed Peter Rummell in May

Newspaper article The Florida Times Union

New CEO Will Take the Helm at St. Joe; COO "Britt" Greene Will Succeed Peter Rummell in May

Article excerpt

Byline: MARK BASCH

Peter Rummell joined The St. Joe Co. 11 years ago as the Jacksonville-based company was beginning a transformation from an industrial conglomerate to a real estate development firm. Now with St. Joe transforming the way it operates its real estate business, Rummell is stepping aside as chief executive officer.

St. Joe announced late Monday that President and Chief Operating Officer Wm. Britton "Britt" Greene will be promoted to CEO at the company's annual meeting in May. Rummell, 62, will stay on as chairman of the board of directors.

St. Joe has been working on a management succession plan for two years, when St. Joe put together a team of five executives to run the company into the future. Greene, 53, was named chief operating officer in August 2006 and became president last October, firmly establishing himself as Rummell's successor.

"This is just a natural time," Rummell said Tuesday in a conference call with analysts.

"Our goal [in establishing a succession plan] was to make it a non-event in terms of transition. I think we're succeeding in that," he said.

In an interview Tuesday, Rummell said he will still be involved in the company's strategy going forward. He and Greene have not yet decided on how their formal responsibilities will break down.

"We're going to sort of figure it out as we go," Rummell said.

Greene said in an interview that he expects to continue working closely with Rummell.

"We've been working very well together for as long as I've been with the company," said Greene, who joined St. Joe in January 1998, one year after Rummell.

Rummell became CEO as St. Joe was selling off its paper mill and other industrial assets to focus on developing its vast real estate holdings, which included more than 1 million acres of Florida land in 1997 and now totals about 700,000 acres, mainly in the Florida Panhandle.

In addition to the management succession plan, St. Joe has also been going through another transformation for the past year. …

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