Union Pacific appointed Jim Vena as CEO and a member of its board. The company also announced that Beth Whited, Union Pacific’s executive vice president, sustainability and strategy and chief human resources officer, has been appointed as president. Mike McCarthy, Union Pacific’s lead independent director, has been elected as chairman.
Vena succeeds Lance Fritz, who stepped down as chairman, president and CEO. He has more than 40 years of industry experience and is returning to Union Pacific after serving as its COO from 2019-2020 and as a senior advisor to the chairman in 2021. During his tenure as COO of Union Pacific, Vena oversaw a team that achieved efficiency savings of more than $1 billion and delivered the best service product in the company’s history. Prior to that, Vena spent over four decades at Canadian National Railway.
Whited has been key to Union Pacific’s transformation over many years across numerous functions. Her award-winning work driving sustainability and workforce development helped the company advance its culture and distinguish itself from its peers. She previously served as chief human resources officer.