LaPerch and Stoltz qualify as independent board members under Nasdaq listing requirements. LaPerch will serve on the board’s compensation committee, and Stoltz will serve on the audit committee. The appointments are effective immediately.
The company also announced that Dennis Foster will retire from the board of directors on Feb. 1, 2015. As previously announced, Francis X. “Skip” Frantz will leave the board and become chairman of the board of the real estate investment trust to be created through Windstream’s spinoff of certain telecommunications network assets. Frantz will leave the Windstream board upon close of the transaction, which is expected to occur in the first quarter of 2015.
“I am delighted to welcome Bill LaPerch and Mike Stoltz to our board. Both are distinguished professionals with deep experience in telecommunications and finance,” said Jeff Gardner, president and chief executive officer of Windstream. “Bill’s extensive telecom and technology background will be very beneficial in shaping our ongoing transformation strategy. Mike has provided sound financial advice and strategy to leading public telecommunications providers and his financial expertise uniquely positions him to join our audit committee.”
“We are immensely grateful for Dennis’ leadership on our board. He also has been a great mentor for me throughout my career, and we wish him the best in his retirement,” Gardner said.
William G. LaPerch Background
LaPerch, 59, is the former president and chief executive officer of AboveNet Communications, Inc., a provider of bandwidth infrastructure services. Prior to AboveNet, LaPerch served as president of network services and president of enterprise services for Metromedia Fiber Network, a provider of metro fiber services. He also has held various operations and engineering positions at MCI WorldCom, Inc., a global communications company.
LaPerch serves on the boards of Digital Realty Trust, a leading global provider of data center solutions, and Imation Corporation, a global scalable storage and data security company. He is a graduate of the U.S. Military Academy at West Point and received a Master of Business Administration degree from Columbia University.
Michael G. Stoltz Background
Stoltz, 63, is a former audit partner with Ernst & Young with nearly 40 years experience serving clients primarily in the telecommunications, media and entertainment industries.
Prior to joining Ernst & Young in 2002, Stoltz was a partner with Arthur Andersen providing audit, finance and specialized project services to clients in the energy, governmental and telecommunications sectors.
Stoltz is a member of the American Institute of Certified Public Accountants and is a registered CPA in several states.
Stoltz serves on the advisory council of SAMMinistries, the largest provider of homeless prevention services in San Antonio, Texas. He earned a Bachelor of Arts degree in finance and a Master of Business Administration degree from Miami University in Ohio.
Dennis E. Foster Background
Foster, 73, has served as a director of Windstream since July 2006, and is a member of the compensation committee. He served as chairman of the board from February 2010 to May 2013, and lead director from July 2006 to February 2010.
Foster is a principal in Foster Thoroughbred Investments. He served as a director of Alltel Corp. from 1998 through 2006. Prior to his retirement in 2000, Foster held a number of leadership positions in the telecommunications industry, including president and chief executive officer of 360° Communications, and he has more than 40 years of experience in the telecommunications industry.
About Windstream Holdings, Inc.
Windstream Holdings, Inc. (NASDAQ: WIN) is the parent company of Windstream Corp. and its subsidiaries. Windstream, a FORTUNE 500 and S&P 500 company, is a leading provider of advanced network communications and technology solutions, including cloud computing and managed services, to businesses nationwide. The company also offers broadband, phone and digital TV services to consumers primarily in rural areas. For more information, visit www.windstream.com .