Steven L. Gerard said he plans to retire as CEO of the professional services firm CBIZ in March 2016, and will be succeeded by president and COO Jerome P. Grisko Jr.

Gerard joined CBIZ as CEO and director in October 2000 when the company was called Century Business Services. He was elected to serve as chairman in October 2002.

CBIZ made the announcement Wednesday following the filing of the company's Form 10-K for the year ending Dec. 31, 2015. Although it is a publicly traded company, CBIZ operates in an alternative practice structure with the auditing firm Mayer Hoffman McCann, and also has an accounting division in New England known as CBIZ Tofias after acquiring Tofias in 2008.

Following his retirement, Gerard intends to continue to serve as non-executive chairman of the CBIZ board of directors. The board plans to appoint the current president and COO, Grisko, to succeed Gerard as CEO. Grisko is expected to retain his current role as president. 

Grisko joined CBIZ as vice president of mergers and acquisitions in September 1998 when the company was known as Century Business Services and was promoted to senior vice president of mergers and acquisitions and legal affairs in December 1998. He has served as president and COO since February 2000. Prior to joining CBIZ, Grisko served as a partner with the law firm of Baker & Hostetler, LLP, from January 1995 to September 1998.

“Following the completion of our 2015 fiscal year and my fifteenth year as CEO of CBIZ, it will be time for me to spend more time pursuing my many other interests,” Gerard said in a statement. “I am extremely proud of being part of a team who has built CBIZ into a premier professional services company providing outstanding service and counsel to over 90,000 clients throughout the United States.  CBIZ continues to grow each year, has a strong balance sheet and enormous market potential.  Under the able leadership of Jerry Grisko and our other senior managers, as well as the dedication of our over 4,000 associates, I am completely confident of our future prospects.”

Prior to joining the company, Gerard was chairman and CEO of Great Point Capital, Inc., a provider of operational and advisory services from 1997 to October 2000. From 1991 to 1997, he was chairman and CEO of Triangle Wire & Cable and its successor Ocean View Capital.

Gerard’s prior experience includes 16 years with Citibank in various senior corporate finance and banking positions and seven years with the American Stock Exchange, where he last served as vice president of the Securities Division. Gerard currently serves on the boards of directors of Lennar Corporation, Joy Global, Inc., and Las Vegas Sands Corporation.

“Steve's leadership over the past fourteen years has been invaluable and has contributed greatly towards CBIZ becoming one of the leading professional services companies in the U.S.,” said CBIZ lead director Rick Burdick. “He has built a solid foundation, assembled a terrific management team, and has positioned the company for success for many years to come. We are pleased he has agreed to continue his guidance as chairman after his retirement as CEO. We look forward to working with Jerry and have full confidence in his ability to lead CBIZ going forward.”

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