In a news release posted to its website Friday, First Data Corp., a Sandy Springs-based global electronic commerce and payment processing company, Friday announced CEO Jon Judge plans to retire from First Data for undisclosed health reasons.
Judge informed the board of directors of his decision last week and has received its full support, the news release stated. He was named CEO Oct. 1 and joined the company in October 2010. Judge previously was CEO of PayChex, a Rochester, N.Y.-based payroll processing company, for six years. He also worked at Armonk, N.Y.-based IBM Corp. for 26 years.
First Data’s board will conduct a search for a new CEO. Judge will remain in his position until a transition is made, but his retirement is to start no later than March 31, company spokesman Chip Swearngan wrote in an email.
“While my plans didn’t anticipate such an early retirement, those plans needed to be changed for the benefit of my health,” Judge said. “The directors have been very understanding and very gracious in their accommodation.”
Board chair Joe Forehand added, “We appreciate all the results Jon has accomplished at First Data. He has provided great leadership and helped us take action to make First Data ‘a great place to work.’ Jon has helped the company drive a customer-first focus. Over the last eight quarters under Jon’s leadership, First Data’s EBITDA [earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization] has grown significantly. We’ve made great progress in bringing new, innovative products to market and we are a leader in the ongoing changes impacting the payments industry. We will miss Jon’s leadership and wish him well in his recovery.”