SJW CEO Rich Roth leaves at short notice

  • Push-out Score suggests push-out forces
  • After 18 years on the job
  • Accolades, praise and thanks for Roth
  • Eric Thornburg taking over
  • Roth said 61 words

(exechange) — San Jose, California, September 29, 2017 — Rich Roth, chief executive of SJW, leaves. It is a change at short notice. As announced by SJW Group in a news release published on Thursday, September 28, 2017 and in a regulatory filing published on Friday, September 29, 2017, W.Richard (Rich) Roth leaves the post as Chief Executive Officer at the utility holding company after 18 years on the job, effective November 05, 2017.

It is the end of an era.

Among the 3,000 largest publicly held companies incorporated in the U.S. based on market capitalization, only 15 percent of the CEOs who departed over the past twelve months left after more than 15 years. Overall, the average tenure of those who left was 9.1 years, according to data compiled by exechange.

Roth’s duties are taken over by Eric Thornburg, most recently Chief Executive Officer at Connecticut Water Service, Inc.

The fact that Roth’s successor is brought in from outside suggests that the board may seek to stimulate change with fresh ideas and new initiatives.

No reason given

In the announcement, SJW did not explicitly explain the reason for Roth’s imminent move, opening the door for speculation.

Precise information about the future plans of Roth was not immediately available.


SJW said: “W. Richard Roth will retire as President and Chief Executive Officer of SJW Group on November 5, 2017.”

Share price rise since March 2009

The change follows a rise in the share price of SJW Group since March 2009.

On the job as CEO since 1999

Roth serves as President, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of SJW Group, SJW Land Company and Texas Water Alliance Limited.

Roth is also the Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of the Board of San Jose Water Company and SJWTX, Inc.

Roth was appointed Chief Executive Officer of SJW Group in 1999 and President in 1996.

Prior to becoming President, he was Chief Financial Officer and Treasurer of the Corporation from 1990 to 1996 and Vice President from April 1992 until October 1996.

Roth will continue to serve as Chairman of the Board until the next annual meeting of stockholders, and from November 6, 2017 to December 31, 2017, he will serve as Chief Executive Emeritus of the Company and San Jose Water Company, a wholly-owned subsidiary of the Company.

Push-out Score suggests push-out forces

It is not completely certain what forces eventually triggered Rich Roth’s imminent move.

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

Read the full story in the exechange report 41.2017 ($).