Range CEO Jeff Ventura leaves

  • After around 11 years in the position
  • Accolades and praise for Ventura
  • Dennis Degner taking over
  • Ventura said 76 words

(exechange) — Fort Worth, Texas, March 16, 2023 — Jeff Ventura, chief executive of Range, leaves his position. As announced by Range Resources Corp. in a news release on Thursday, March 16, 2023, Jeffrey L. (Jeff) Ventura leaves his post as chief executive officer at the natural gas and NGL producer, after around 11 years in the role, effective May 10, 2023.

The average tenure of CEOs who announced their departure over the past 12 months was 8.1 years. Around 29% of departing CEOs left their posts after more than 10 years. This is according to data collected by CEO-exit research firm exechange.

exechange tracks CEO departures at the 3,000 largest publicly traded companies in the U.S., examines the reasons CEOs leave and determines the Push‑out Score™, a measure of pressure on departing chief executives on a scale of 0 to 10.

Ventura leaves the company effective June 2, 2023.

Jeff Ventura’s duties as CEO will be taken over by Dennis L. Degner, currently Chief Operating Officer at Range Resources Corp.

“Drive shareholder value”

Range did not give an explicit reason for Jeff Ventura’s departure from the CEO post. Chairman Greg Maxwell stated: “This succession plan is a testament to the strong culture at Range, and we are excited to promote our next CEO from within the Company’s existing leadership team. The Board is confident Dennis will continue to elevate the Company’s performance and drive shareholder value.”

The top three reasons cited in corporate announcements for CEO departures over the past 12 months are performance issues (27.6% of cases), implementation of a planned succession (17.1%) and the statement that the time was right for a change (9.6%), according to exechange data. Other motives given for leadership changes included the outgoing CEO’s wish to pursue other opportunities (5.3% of cases), personal reasons (3.7%) and conduct issues (2.2%). Rather rarely stated reasons are health problems (1.6% of cases), disagreement (1.2%), death (1.2%), the desire for more time with family (0.9%) and career change (0.9%). Sometimes, more than one reason was given. In 28.6% of cases, no reason was given.

Precise information regarding Jeff Ventura’s future plans was not immediately available.


Range said: “[A]fter almost 20 years of service which included the discovery and development of the Marcellus Shale field, Jeff Ventura plans to retire from the Company effective June 2, 2023 and will not seek reelection to the Board.”

Generally, retirements are seen as formally voluntary departures. Still, CEOs may also be pressured to accelerate their retirement plans. In fact, 35% of the time “retire” was used in CEO departure announcements over the past 12 months, the departing chief executives received Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5, indicating elevated pressure.

Share price increase since March 2018

The announcement follows an increase in Range Resources Corp.’s share price of 75% since March 2018.

In the position of CEO since 2012

Jeff Ventura became CEO of the Company in 2012.

Ventura is the Company’s Chief Executive Officer and President, having joined Range in 2003 as Chief Operating Officer.

Ventura was named President effective May 2008 and Chief Executive Officer in January 2012.

Previously, Ventura served as President and Chief Operating Officer of Matador Petroleum Corporation, which he joined in 1997.

Prior to his service at Matador, Ventura spent eight years at Maxus Energy Corporation where he managed various engineering, exploration and development operations and was responsible for coordination of engineering technology.

Previously, Ventura was with Tenneco Oil Exploration and Production, where he held various engineering and operating positions.

Ventura earned a Bachelor of Science degree in Petroleum and Natural Gas Engineering from the Pennsylvania State University.

76 words by Jeff Ventura

In the news release announcing his departure as CEO of Range Resources Corp., Jeff Ventura received accolades and praise.

In announcing the leadership change, Jeff Ventura said 76 words.

“The right leader at the right time”

Jeff Ventura stated: “Dennis’ leadership and technical skills have enhanced Range’s operational strategy, performance, and company culture. He has played a key role in Range’s growth and success over the past decade and is the right leader at the right time for Range. I am very proud of what we have accomplished together, specifically in Pennsylvania, where we pioneered the Marcellus shale and matured Range into a top-ten producer of natural gas and natural gas liquids in the country.”

Over the past 12 months, 25% of all outgoing CEOs remained silent in the departure announcement, according to data compiled by exechange. Departing CEOs who did make a statement said an average of 110 words. The longest statement was 510 words. The shortest statement was 23 words. Leadership transitions in which departing CEOs provide conspicuously short, excessively long or no explanations for their move are statistically associated with elevated pressure and show an increased incidence of Push-out Scores above the critical threshold of 5.

39% of CEOs are forced out or fired

When CEO departures are announced, exechange determines the Push-out Score on a scale of 0 to 10 to assess how likely it is that the chief executive was pushed out or felt pressure to leave the position, with 0 being most likely a voluntary move and 10 being most likely a forced exit. Anything over a 5 indicates that there are valid reasons to believe an executive may have been pushed out.

Of the 322 CEO departures in the Russell 3000 Index evaluated over the past 12 months (March 16, 2022, to March 15, 2023), the average Push-out Score was 6, according to exechange data. References to conduct issues, disagreements and irregularities lead to the highest Push-out Scores. When performance issues, time with family or pursuit of other opportunities were cited as departure reasons, the average Push-out Scores were also significantly elevated.

Around 39% of the CEO departure events from the past 12 months received Push-out Scores of 8 or higher.

In other words, in the past 12 months, three in eight departing CEOs were forced out or fired.

Push-out Score for Jeff Ventura’s move determined

The Push-out Score regarding Jeff Ventura’s move is explained point by point in the exechange report.

exechange reached out to Range and offered the company the opportunity to comment on the score.

Read the full story in the exechange report 12.2023 ($).