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Rail News: BNSF Railway

Ice to succeed Rose as BNSF's CEO


A top management change is on tap at BNSF Railway Co. come New Year's Day: President and Chief Operating Officer Carl Ice will succeed Matt Rose as chief executive officer, effective Jan. 1.

Ice, 57, will become president and CEO, and Rose — currently chairman and CEO — will assume the role of executive chairman. Over the next decade, Rose, 54, will continue to work with BNSF's leadership team to strategically position the Class I for growth and investment, including long-term organizational planning, market positioning and public policy.

A BNSF employee for 34 years, Ice has served as president since November 2010. He began his railroading career with the Santa Fe Railway's industrial engineering department in 1979, and later held various positions in operations, finance and information systems. Ice's previous executive posts with the Santa Fe and BNSF include senior vice president of operations, VP of administration, VP-carload business unit, VP-executive, VP and chief mechanical officer, and VP-operations north.

In 1995, Ice led a team that orchestrated the merger and subsequent integration of Burlington Northern Railroad and the Santa Fe. Since then, he has been integral to the development of the company's operating and marketing plans, BNSF officials said in a press release.

"For over a decade, Carl has worked alongside me, and his assumption of the CEO title is a natural and well-deserved transition," said Rose. "I am pleased for him and the organization, and the continuity he represents as he undertakes the leadership of this role."

CEO since December 2000, Rose previously served BNSF as president and COO, SVP of the merchandise business unit and VP of chemicals, and the Burlington Northern as VP of vehicles and machinery. Prior to joining the BN in 1993, he was VP of transportation for Triple Crown Services. Before that, he held various positions in the trucking industry with International Utilities and Schneider National Inc. Rose won Progressive Railroading's annual "Railroad Innovator Award" in 2010.

"BNSF's performance has far exceeded the high expectations I had at the time of Berkshire's purchase," said Warren Buffett, president and CEO of Berkshire Hathaway Inc., referring to the company's acquisition of BNSF in 2010. "The combination of Matt's and Carl's talents is the perfect arrangement for the future. I consider Berkshire very fortunate to have these men at BNSF's helm."

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