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Matt Rose, as expected, has succeeded Rob Krebs at the helm of Burlington Northern Santa Fe, completing a meteoric rise through the ranks and becoming the youngest chief executive officer of a major railroad. The 41-year-old Rose was elected CEO at BNSF's Board of Directors meeting on December 7. Krebs, 58, will stay on as chairman.
Rose was named BNSF president and chief operating officer in June 1999. He joined Burlington Northern in 1993, and in June 1994, he was named vice president, vehicles and machinery. Following the 1995 merger with Santa Fe, Rose was appointed vice president, chemicals. In May 1996, he was promoted to senior vice president, Merchandise Business Unit, and went on to become senior vice president and chief operations officer. Prior to joining BN, he was a vice president at Norfolk Southern's RoadRailer subsidiary, Triple Crown Services, and had held positions with trucking lines Schneider National and International Utilities. His railroad career began in 1981, when he was a management trainee with Missouri Pacific.
Krebs praised his hand-picked successor. "I've been a railroad president or CEO for 20 years," Krebs said, "and I know one of my most important jobs is to find a successor who has the confidence of the Board and management. Matt Rose's experience in both marketing and operations, as well as in the rail and trucking industries, make him superbly qualified to be BNSF's next CEO."
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