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PulteGroup CEO to retire amid demands for his departure

RichardDugas Jr. will retire as PulteGroup Inc.'s chairman and CEO at the annualshareholders meeting to be held in May 2017.

Thecompany said April 4 that Dugas' decision to retire comes partly in the wake ofcompany founder Bill Pulte, Pulte's grandson and calling for an immediateCEO change and "a different direction for the company." Dugas offeredto step down in order to avoid a contested public battle and to accelerate theboard's succession plan.

Dugasrecently relinquished his role as president of the company to Ryan Marshall, asreported earlier.He joined the company in 1994. He has served as chairman of the board sinceAugust 2009 and as CEO since July 2003.

Aspecial committee comprising independent directors, namely James Postl, CherylGrise and Patrick O'Leary, has been formed to conduct a search for Dugas'successor. The search committee is in the process of hiring an executiverecruitment firm, the company said, adding that both internal and externalcandidates will be considered for the chief executive role.