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Leonard to retire as Entergy chair, CEO

Associated Press Modified: September 5, 2012 at 7:00 pm •  Published: September 5, 2012

NEW ORLEANS (AP) — J. Wayne Leonard will retire Jan. 31 as chairman and chief executive officer of Entergy Corp., the parent company of major electric providers in Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi and Texas, the company announced Wednesday.

Leo Denault, currently executive vice president and chief financial officer, will succeed Leonard, the company said in a statement.

Andrew Marsh, currently vice president for system planning, will succeed Denault.

Also retiring is Entergy Wholesale Commodities President Richard Smith. William Mohl, currently chairman, president and CEO of Entergy Louisiana and Entergy Gulf States Louisiana, will succeed Smith.

Entergy has been criticized by some Louisiana officials for what they deemed a slow restoration of power following Hurricane Isaac. Entergy spokesman Chanel Lagarde said the changes announced Wednesday had nothing to do with the criticism.

"The succession plan we announced today is the result of ongoing conversations with the board of directors that have occurred over many months," Lagarde said, noting that the changes don't take effect until February.

Leonard became CEO and joined the board on Jan. 1, 1999, and assumed the additional role of chairman in 2006.

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