Sunoco Inc. said its board of directors has elected Lynn Laverty Elsenhans as CEO and president effective Aug. 8, 2008, when current CEO and President John Drosdick retires. Elsenhans has also been elected as a member of Sunoco’s board of directors.
To assist in the transition, Drosdick will remain non-executive chairman of the board until Dec. 31, 2008.
An experienced oil industry executive, Elsenhans, 52, joins Sunoco from Shell Downstream Inc., a subsidiary of Royal Dutch/Shell Group, where she served since 2005 as executive vice president of Global Manufacturing.
Elsenhans was responsible for Shell’s refining and chemical manufacturing operations, which included 40 plants and more than 17,000 employees. From 2003 to 2005, Elsenhans served concurrently as president of Shell Oil Company and president and CEO of Shell Oil Products U.S., where she was responsible for the financial and operating performance of the refining and marketing business and played a coordinating role for all Shell businesses in the U.S.
Elsenhans earned a bachelor’s degree in applied mathematics from Rice University and an MBA from Harvard Business School. She also serves on the board of directors of International Paper Company, a global paper and packaging company.
"Lynn’s record at Shell speaks for itself,” Drosdick said. “She knows the industry intimately and has proven to be a capable manager of a large and complex business. With her qualifications, track record of performance and fresh perspective, Lynn is clearly ready to build on Sunoco’s success."
Speaking on behalf of Sunoco’s board of directors, presiding chair of the Governance Committee Jack Ratcliffe said: "For the last year, the board of directors searched for a CEO with excellent credentials and experience to succeed Jack Drosdick. Lynn has the outstanding background in refining, marketing and chemicals to lead Sunoco’s traditional business lines, as well as champion the growth of our promising coke and logistics businesses. We are confident that Lynn will further develop the strategy we have followed for the last decade."
"Sunoco is a great company with a strong portfolio of diverse businesses,” Elsenhans said. “I am honored to join the leadership team of a company known for its proud tradition and dedicated employees."
Drosdick, 65, had served as Sunoco’s CEO for the past eight years.
“I have enjoyed working with the employees, the senior team and the board of directors to build the business and set a clear strategic direction for the company," Drosdick said. "With that accomplished, it is now the right time to step aside."