Top 2 CSX executives retiring, railroad lays off 1,000

AP News
Posted: Feb 21, 2017 5:31 PM

OMAHA, Neb. (AP) — The top two CSX executives will retire this spring, and the railroad plans to lay off roughly 1,000 management employees next month.

CSX Corp. announced both moves Tuesday as the railroad faces pressure from a hedge fund seeking to install the executive who led Canadian Pacific's turnaround, Hunter Harrison.

CSX Chairman and CEO Michael Ward and President Clarence Gooden will both retire at the end of May. Previously, Ward had planned to work through 2019.

CSX promoted its head of sales and marketing, Fredrik Eliasson, to president. The company says that shouldn't pre-empt discussions with Paul Hilal's Mantle Ridge hedge fund about Harrison becoming CSX's next CEO.

A CSX spokesman says severance packages will be offered to laid-off employees. Most of the jobs being eliminated are in Jacksonville, Florida.