St. Louis-based Arch Coal (NYSE: ACI) on April 23 announced several changes to its board of directors in keeping with its planned succession process.
John W. Eaves, previously Arch’s president and chief executive officer, has been elected chairman and CEO effective immediately, succeeding Wesley M. Taylor, who will remain on the Arch board. “We have been planning for this transition and John’s election to chairman is the next logical step as we navigate this dynamic market environment,” Taylor said. “John has an incredible depth of industry knowledge and a keen ability to execute on our strategy and to guide the company successfully through these unprecedented challenges in coal markets.”
“I am honored to accept this expanded role and want to personally thank Wes for his ongoing leadership and dedication to the company,” Eaves said. “I look forward to continuing the progress we have made in positioning Arch for future success. We remain sharply focused on managing through this current period of market weakness, capitalizing on opportunities as coal markets rebound and creating long-term value for our shareholders.”
Taylor joined Arch’s board in 2005 after a long, successful career at TXU, and was elected lead independent director in 2013. Eaves was elected to Arch’s board in 2006 and was elected president and CEO in 2012.
In addition, the board elected Paul T. Hanrahan to the position of Lead Independent Director, effective immediately. “Paul has brought a wealth of knowledge about international and domestic energy markets to the board, particularly in the global power sector,” Eaves said. “We consistently call upon Paul for guidance as we manage through rapidly changing coal markets and look forward to his strong and steady leadership in this new role.” Hanrahan is the former CEO of power producer AES Corp. (NYSE: AES) and was elected to Arch’s board in 2012.
In addition to the board changes, Arch also announced that Paul A. Lang, previously Arch’s executive vice president and chief operating officer, has been elected president and chief operating officer, effective immediately. “Paul has made significant contributions to Arch during his tenure and has distinguished himself again and again as a leader in the company,” Eaves said. “I am confident he will excel in this role as he continues to drive continuous improvement throughout the organization.” Lang was elected executive vice president and COO in 2012 and joined Arch’s board in early 2014.
Arch Coal is a major producer in several regions, including the Powder River Basin, Colorado and Central/Northern Appalachia.