Taylor to Retire as President & CEO of MFA Oil
Fenner named as successor, to assume role in September
Published in CSP Daily News
COLUMBIA, Mo. -- Jerry Taylor, president and CEO of MFA Oil Co., will retire effective Aug. 31, 2014, the company said. Taylor will remain with the company to lead MFA Oil's investments in MFA Oil Biomass, AgFuel Energy Systems and WasteWater Logic. Mark Fenner, currently COO, will assume the role of president and CEO as of Sept. 1, 2014.
Taylor has been the company's president and CEO since Jan. 1, 2003. He started his relationship with MFA Oil in 1982 as a consultant, having developed a chain of convenience stores. In 1988, Taylor became an employee, and the company named him director of marketing. In 1991, it appointed him vice president of sales, and in 1992, he transitioned to vice president of supply and distribution. In 1995, MFA named him vice president of retail, and in 1998, it promoted him to senior vice president of retail and supply. The company named him president in 2003.
Taylor serves on the boards of the MFA and MFA Oil Foundations. He also serves on the board of the National Cooperative Refinery Association (NCRA) and Mid America Biodiesel, in which MFA Oil has an ownership stake.
"I am grateful to have spent nearly 32 years with this great company and its employees and am deeply honored to have had the opportunity to lead it for the last 11. I am proud of what MFA Oil has accomplished during a decade of both successes and challenges," said Taylor. "I believe that 2014 is the right time for me to retire for a number of reasons. First, the company has performed well over the past couple of years, exceeding our expectations. As a result, the company is operationally very sound and positioned for continued success. Secondly, the senior leadership team and the board have laid out a vision for the company that will guide MFA Oil for many years to come and this gives me great confidence about MFA Oil's future success. And third, Mark is the right guy and this is the right time for him to become the next leader of the company."
Fenner has served as COO since September 2012. He has been responsible for overseeing the day-to-day operations of the refined fuel, propane, Petro-Card 24, American Petroleum Marketers, Break Time convenience store and Jiffy Lube operations.
Since Fenner joined MFA Oil, part of his focus has been on the growth of company operations. During the last 18 months, MFA Oil has added more than $100 million in sales through acquisitions and has expanded its footprint into the states of Nebraska, North Carolina, Wyoming and Virginia.
Fenner brought 26 years of energy sales, marketing and cooperative experience to MFA Oil. Prior to joining MFA Oil, he served as the national account director for the south region for Cenex Harvest States (CHS), which generated more than $8 billion in revenue. Before that, he worked for Country Energy LLC and Farmland Industries in various leadership and sales capacities.
"Mark has a long history of building sales for cooperatives in the energy field," said Taylor. "His knowledge, industry experience and leadership will continue to be a great asset to MFA Oil. His decisive leadership, personal style and experience uniquely qualify him to step in to this role in September. He is well-respected across the industry, brings a high level of energy and embodies the company's core values."
"For more than three decades, Jerry has provided invaluable leadership for MFA Oil and for our industry," Fenner said. "His consistent and resolute focus on efficiency, innovation and transparency has distinguished our company. With the support of MFA Oil employees, I look forward to building on Jerry's legacy and to leading this company to even higher levels of achievement as we go forward."
Benny Farrell, chairman of MFA Oil's board, said, "On behalf of MFA Oil's entire board of directors, I would like to recognize Jerry Taylor's significant leadership over a challenging period for both the company and the industry. He has been seen as a leader among his peers in the industry for many years and MFA Oil's reputation, as well as its operating performance have both benefited from his leadership and guidance. Strong leaders require strong successors and the board is pleased to appoint Mark Fenner to the role of CEO and president. His experiences and personal style equip him well for the challenges ahead and we are confident that he will build upon our strong foundation."
MFA Oil, formed in 1929, is a farmer-owned cooperative with more than 40,000 members. In 2013 MFA Oil had sales of $1.3 billion. The MFA Oil mission is to improve the economic well-being of its farmer members through the distribution of energy and energy-related products. The company supplies fuels, lubricants and propane to customers in Missouri, Arkansas, Oklahoma, Kansas, Indiana, Kentucky, Nebraska, Colorado, Wyoming, Iowa and Virginia and is the seventh largest propane company in the United States. MFA Oil also operates MFA Oil Biomass LLC, a vertically integrated biomass company; Agfuel Energy Systems, a biomass furnace company; and WasteWater Logic, a wastewater treatment company that utilizes biomass. Through a subsidiary, MFA Oil operates Break Time c-stores in Missouri and Arkansas, Jiffy Lube franchises in Central Missouri and Big O Tires franchises in central Missouri and northern Arkansas.