CALGARY, Alta. -- Canadian Pacific has appointed Brian Grassby as its senior vice-president and chief financial officer (CFO), effective Nov. 1. Current CFO Kathryn McQuade is set to retire on that date. McQuade will remain as a senior advisor to Grassby until the end of her contract in May in an effort to assist with the transition, the company announced.
"My decision to retire at this time reflects my belief that a CFO should have a long-term commitment to the company. Brian is ready to take the reins and his deep financial expertise and continuity of leadership will drive overall financial strength and shareholder value as the company enters this significant period of change," said McQuade. "Brian and I have been working on transition plans and with our new CIO, Mike Redeker in place, now is an appropriate time for me to shift my role to an advisory position. I feel confident that I am leaving Hunter with a leadership team that will serve him, CP and our shareholders very well."
McQuade joined CP in June 2007 as executive vice-president and chief operating officer and was appointed executive vice-president and CFO in September 2008. Prior to her move to CP, she spent 27 years with Norfolk Southern Corp.
"It has been a great privilege for Canadian Pacific to have benefited from Kathryn's leadership and I thank her for her numerous contributions," said E. Hunter Harrison, CP president and CEO. "She has arguably been one of the top CFO's in the industry for many years and we are sad to see her go. It is also with great confidence that we welcome Brian to his new role as he will be instrumental in moving CP's financial performance forward."
"CP is going through a period of exciting change," said Grassby. "I am extremely honoured by this opportunity and look forward to leading the finance team into the future. Kathryn and I have worked together for the last five years. I want to thank her for all her wise counsel and advice. I wish her all the best."
As CP's senior vice-president and CFO, Grassby's responsibilities will continue to include financial planning, reporting and accounting systems as well as pension, treasury, tax and supply services. Under Grassby's leadership, in 2010 CP successfully completed the transition from Canadian to US GAAP. Prior to joining CP as vice-president and comptroller in 2001, Grassby spent more than 14 years in finance at a large Canadian electronics firm. He is a graduate in Commerce from McGill University and is a Chartered Accountant.