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Genesee & Wyoming Inc. (G&W) Chairman Mortimer Fuller III will retire after the company's annual meeting in May. He will be succeeded by Chief Executive Officer Jack Hellman, the company announced today.When he retires, Fuller will have given 40 years of service to the company and the short-line industry, G&W officials said in a press release.Fuller became CEO, president and chairman in 1977, when he purchased a controlling interest in G&W's corporate predecessor, the original Genesee and Wyoming Railroad, which his great-grandfather founded in 1899. He has since served as CEO for 30 years and chairman for 40 years."The commitment of our remarkable employees, exceptional, industry-leading safety performance and the strength and depth of the organization today is more than I ever imagined in 1977," Fuller said. "The transition to a new generation of leadership has been a seamless process, and I'm confident G&W will continue to create value for all stockholders in the years to come."After passage of the Staggers Act that deregulated the railroad industry in 1980, Fuller led the company's growth by acquisition, through an initial public offering in 1996 and expansion into the Australian and Canadian rail markets in 1997. G&W's acquisitions continued in those markets and recently expanded to the United Kingdom and Europe."Through the execution of Mort's extraordinary vision for his family business, G&W has grown from a 14-mile short line railroad in upstate New York with 1977 revenues of $4.4 million to a portfolio of 122 freight railroads worldwide with 2015 revenues of $2 billion," said Hellman, who's also a board director.Hellman will be appointed chairman after Fuller's retirement. Upon Hellmann's appointment, Oivind Lorentzen will be appointed G&W's lead independent director.
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