Windstream COO Whittington to resign, as company realigns top management team

Windstream is shaking up its top management team, announcing that Chief Operating Officer Brent Whittington will resign on Sept. 1, after serving in the role for five years.

The service provider said that it will not replace Whittington, instead eliminating the COO position after he leaves and distributing the duties between Mark Faris, executive vice president of operations, and Randy Nicklas, CTO and executive vice president of engineering.

Faris and Nicklas will report directly to Windstream's president and CEO, Jeff Gardner.

"Brent has been instrumental to Windstream's success from our formation as a company and throughout our transformation," Gardner said in a release. "I thank him for his leadership and counsel, and I wish him the very best in the future. Mark and Randy are veteran telecom leaders committed to delivering operational excellence, and I look forward to working with them directly to drive our vision to be the premier enterprise communications and services provider."

Whittington is a Windstream veteran. Besides serving as COO of Windstream, he was the executive vice president and chief financial officer of the company from December 2005 to August 2009. Previously, he served as senior vice president of operations for Windstream predecessor company Alltel Corp.

His departure comes at a pivotal time for the telco.

In July, Windstream announced its intention to spin off a number of its copper and fiber assets into a publicly traded real-estate investment trust (REIT). Earlier, the service provider created a new holding company called Windstream Holdings, Inc., which became a new publicly traded parent company of Windstream Corp. and its various operating subsidiaries.

For more:
- see the release

Editor's Corner: Will AT&T, Verizon follow Windstream down the REIT asset path?

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