The Postal Service Board of Governors announced today that Postmaster General and CEO Pat Donahoe has decided to retire Feb. 1, 2015, after 39 years with USPS. The board also announced the appointment of Megan Brennan, currently chief operating officer, as the next PMG.
At a public board meeting, Chairman Mickey D. Barnett called Donahoe a visionary leader who worked tirelessly to move the organization forward during one of its most difficult periods.
“Pat was the calm in the financial storm. He ignored the naysayers and went forward with his team and built a comprehensive plan for the future of the organization, made tough decisions, and executed against those decisions,” said Barnett. “That’s a testament to the great team he built and his own personal leadership.”
The board appointed Donahoe PMG in the midst of a severe financial crisis, the result of an inflexible business model that limited the Postal Service’s ability to respond to declining First-Class Mail volumes. Donahoe created an integrated financial plan and took aggressive measures to control costs — including the rationalization of mail processing, delivery and Post Office operations. These changes have significantly lowered the Postal Service’s cost base.
Commenting on the fact that USPS has roughly 220,000 fewer employees today than it did in 2004, Barnett noted that “no other organization has restructured itself so dramatically and on such a large scale, and continued functioning at such a high level. And it did so without relying upon employee layoffs.”
Donahoe said he believes the Postal Service is headed in the right direction, but still has a long way to go. “The organization has a lot of momentum right now, and we’re doing a lot to innovate and improve the way we serve the public and our customers,” Donahoe said. “The nature of delivery is changing dramatically and the Postal Service will continue to be an important part of those changes.”
Barnett praised Brennan, who will become the 74th PMG and the first woman to hold the job, as the ideal choice to succeed Donahoe.
“Megan has demonstrated outstanding vision, leadership and executive ability in her role as chief operating officer, and has been extraordinarily successful in managing the operations of the Postal Service,” said Barnett. “She is highly regarded throughout the Postal Service and among the broader community of our major customers and business partners — and rightly so.”
As COO, Brennan is responsible for the day-to-day activities of 491,000 career employees working in more than 31,000 facilities supported by a fleet of more than 200,000 vehicles. She oversees all Postal Service operations, including mail processing, transportation, delivery and retail operations.
“As the head of operations, Megan has led important initiatives to provide Sunday delivery services, improved tracking, and greater predictability and reliability,” Barnett said. “She has also been highly successful in rationalizing our mail processing, delivery and retail operations.”
Brennan said, “I am deeply honored and humbled to take on this role at such an exciting time for the organization. The Postal Service plays a vital role in America’s society and economy and I’m looking forward to strengthening that role and meeting the demands of a rapidly evolving marketplace in the years ahead.”
Donahoe, whom the board appointed PMG in October 2010, began his USPS career as a clerk while attending the University of Pittsburgh. Prior to his appointment as the organization’s top officer, he served as Deputy Postmaster General and COO.
Brennan, a 28-year veteran of the Postal Service, was named COO and executive vice president in December 2010. Previously she was vice president of Eastern Area Operations and vice president of Northeast Area Operations. She joined USPS in 1986 as a letter carrier in Lancaster, PA, and began her management career as a delivery and collection supervisor.