PAR Technology CEO Don Foley leaves abruptly

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After less than two years in the position
  • Praise and thanks for Foley
  • Savneet Singh taking over in the interim
  • Search for a successor

(exechange) — New Hartford, New York, December 6, 2018 — Don Foley, chief executive of PAR Technology, leaves. It is an abrupt change. As announced by PAR Technology Corp. in a news release and in a regulatory filing published on Thursday, December 6, 2018, Donald H. (Don) Foley has left his post as Chief Executive Officer at the provider of management technology solutions after less than two years in the role, effective December 4, 2018.

No company wants a CEO to flame out in the first years.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, the average tenure of the CEOs who departed over the past 12 months was 9 years, according to data compiled by exechange. Only 13 percent of the CEOs who departed over the past 12 months left the position within two years, and 22 percent left the position within three years.

PAR Technology will undertake a search for a successor.

Don Foley’s duties were taken over in the interim by Savneet Singh, most recently partner of CoVenture, LLC, as Interim Chief Executive Officer.

It is a generational change as well. Savneet Singh is about 38 years younger than Don Foley.

Already a director

Singh is already a director of PAR Technology. Often a board member is a last resort, someone who is turned to in desperation when a company cannot find suitable candidates. On the other hand, directors-turned-executives represent a blend of outsider and insider.

They don’t have the constraints of a pure insider when it comes to leading painful changes or making unpopular decisions, and they have more company knowledge than a pure outsider.

Having been a director, Singh understands the expectations and dynamics of the board and has knowledge of PAR Technology’s organization, risk-management practices and strategy.

“Drive stockholder value”

A reason for Don Foley’s sudden departure from the CEO post was not explicitly given. Cynthia Russo, Lead Independent Director, said: “Looking ahead, the search to identify a permanent CEO is well underway and we will work diligently to identify the best candidate to lead the Company and drive stockholder value.”

Precise information about Don Foley’s future plans was not immediately available.

“Stepped down/resigned”

PAR Technology said: “Dr. Donald H. Foley has stepped-down as CEO and President, and as a director of the Company.”

PAR Technology further said: “On December 4, 2018, Dr. Donald H. Foley resigned as Chief Executive Officer and President of PAR Technology Corporation … and as a director of the Board of Directors … of the Company.”

Share price increase since November 2017

The change follows an increase in PAR Technology Corporation’s share price of 156 percent since November 2017.

In the position of CEO since 2017

Foley has served as the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and President since April 2017, and as a Director since 2016.

Foley has more than 35 years of technology-based government contracting and organizational management experience, risk management, and strategic planning, in both the private and public sectors.

Foley is the sole proprietor of Martingale Consulting, an executive level and strategic, managerial, and business development services firm, which Foley founded in 2011.

From 1991 to 2011, Foley held various senior executive positions at Science Applications International Corporation (“SAIC”, currently Leidos Holdings, Inc.), one of the nation’s largest government contractors, providing scientific, engineering, systems integration and technical services and solutions to all branches of the U.S. Military, agencies of the U.S. Department of Defense, the Intelligence Community, the U.S. Department of Homeland Security and other U.S. Government civil agencies, as well as to customers in selected commercial markets.

At SAIC, Foley served as Executive Vice President from 2005 to 2011, as Group President of the Research and Intelligence Group from 1991 to 2005, and as a member of the board of directors from 2002 to 2007.

Since 2011, Foley has served on the boards of directors of two private companies, Thomas Somerville Co., and T.S. Realty Co., and on the board of directors of Government Secure Solutions CGI (GSSC), Inc., an indirect, non-public subsidiary, of CGI Group Inc., whose securities are registered on the NYSE and the Toronto Stock Exchange.


Generally speaking, when a top leader announces to step down with no permanent successor available, it is a sign that the move was unplanned and too early.

In general, possible causes for an unexpected change may be, among others, disagreement or dispute, health reasons, family reasons and surprising new career opportunities.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Don Foley’s sudden move.

The Push-out Score™ determined by exechange suggests that push-out forces may have contributed to the change.

Read the full story in the exechange report 50.2018 ($).