Union Pacific Update From Eric Butler, Exec. Vice President Marketing & Sales
Announcement Number: CN2014-10
Categories: General Announcements
Posted Date: February 19, 2014
To Our Customers,
Before we get too far into the year, I wanted to take a moment to update you on some important Union Pacific news.
We are sad to report that after a two-year battle against pancreatic cancer, Union Pacific’s Chairman Jim Young passed away on Feb. 15. Jim began his career with Union Pacific in 1978 serving in a variety of roles before being elected chairman in 2007. He served as president and chief executive officer from November 2005 until March 2012. Jim is survived by his wife, Shirley, three children and two grandchildren. Customers and employees alike felt Jim’s powerful influence. His Union Pacific family mourns the loss of this inspiring leader.
Last week we announced some changes to our leadership team. Lance Fritz, who previously served as executive vice president – Operations, has been named president and chief operating officer of the railroad. He will report to Jack Koraleski, CEO. Lance’s previous position as executive vice president – Operations has been filled by Cameron Scott.
Within Marketing and Sales, Paul Hammes, vice president – Agricultural Products, will retire after 10 years of service. Paul will be succeeded by Jason Hess, who has been with the railroad for 19 years and most recently served as vice president – National Customer Service Center (NCSC). In turn, Kate Betsworth will succeed Jason as vice president – NCSC. Kate is another 19-year veteran who most recently served as vice president – Intermodal Operations.
It is exciting to see these changes and how they enhance our company leadership. With the experience, diversity and commitment of these and the other members of our leadership team, I am confident in our ability to continue delivering value to our customers.
Winter Weather Challenges
As you are probably aware, this winter has packed a punch throughout the United States, and, more specifically on our system, in and around Chicago and Minneapolis. Many other places also have seen weather impacts, but these two areas continue to face backlogs even as weather begins to moderate.
To help address these issues, we have repositioned crews to the hardest hit areas, returned more than 300 stored locomotives to service, and re-routed traffic. We’re working closely with our interchange partners to use St. Louis, Kansas City, Memphis and New Orleans as alternatives for east-west interchanges. Progress is steady, and we look forward to achieving fluidity in the affected areas.
While specific weather events will remain unpredictable, railroading will always be an “outdoor sport.” That is one reason we continue to invest heavily in capital projects. Union Pacific has invested more than $38 billion since 2000 and will invest $3.9 billion in 2014. Our ongoing investment in equipment, infrastructure and facilities keep us prepared to support your business growth and ready to address unexpected situations.
In 2014, we are especially excited to open our Santa Teresa Intermodal terminal and fueling station in New Mexico. Another big initiative in 2014 is the Tower 55 Project in the Dallas-Ft. Worth area, which will increase capacity in this high-growth region. We also will be purchasing 200 locomotives – double what we purchased in 2013 – and investing to increase capacity across our network.
We appreciate your support as we work to fully restore operations across our network, bring on new leadership and invest to improve our ability to serve customers. We look forward to serving your growing needs this year and into the future.
Executive Vice President – Marketing and Sales