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Lovett stepping down as Charter's CEO

Wed, 10/12/2011 - 9:55am
Mike Robuck

Charter Communications will be on the hunt for a new CEO now that current CEO and president Michael Lovett told the company's board of directors that he will be stepping down.

Lovett is scheduled to stay on board at Charter until April 30 of next year, unless a successor is found before that date.

Michael LovettCharter's board of directors will begin the process of evaluating candidates, and Lovett will remain in his present positions during this transition period.

"Under Mike's leadership, Charter has established a solid foundation for customer growth through executing on its long-term strategic initiatives and assembling a high quality management team around a much improved financial position," Eric L. Zinterhofer, chairman of the board of Charter, said. "We appreciate his many contributions to the success of the Company and his willingness to assist in an orderly transition. On behalf of the Board of Directors, I thank Mike for his continued service during this transitional period."

Lovett has been with Charter since 2003 and helped guide the company through its Chapter 11 bankruptcy that ended in 2009.

Lovett took over as CEO and president of Charter Communications last year after Neil Smit vacated the CEO post to become president of Comcast Cable. Lovett served as interim CEO and president after Smit's departure in March, but had the interim tag removed in April of last year after Charter conducted a nationwide search.

Prior taking over the helm,  Lovett served as Charter's executive vice president and chief operating officer starting in 2005.

"Charter has made significant progress on our longer-term strategic initiatives and has become a stronger, better positioned company with solid results and extremely talented people," Lovett said. "With Charter on strong footing, I believe this is the right time for me to move on to the next chapter of my career.  In the meantime, I remain fully committed to the Charter team in this succession period and am confident that our board will select an exceptional business leader who will continue to build on the substantial progress we have made over the past several years."

As COO and executive vice president, Lovett was responsible for the oversight of Charter's two operating divisions and company-wide customer care. He was promoted to executive vice president of operations and customer care in 2004.

Lovett joined Charter in 2003 as senior vice president of operations support. Lovett's career in cable television began in 1980 with Centel Communications, where he held a number of positions in operations.

He was with Jones Intercable from 1989 to 1999, rising to senior vice president with responsibility for operations in nine states. He was also with AT&T Broadband as regional vice president of operations from June 1999 to November 2000.

Charter, the nation's fourth-largest cable operator, has largely been backed by Microsoft co-founder Paul Allen.

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