Zuckerman to step down as Boston Properties CEO
Real estate and media mogul Mort Zuckerman is stepping down as head of Boston Properties, the biggest U.S. office real estate investment trust. His replacement will be Owen Thomas of Lehman Brothers Holdings, Bloomberg reported.
Zuckerman, 75, will remain executive chairman, the Boston- based company said today in a statement. As Lehman’s chairman, Thomas, 51, has overseen the sale of assets including apartment operator Archstone Inc. and offices in New York and Austin, Texas, to repay creditors after the investment bank filed for bankruptcy in 2008. The changes are effective April 2.
Zuckerman said the REIT “has been focused on identifying the right person to take over as CEO,” a job he took on in 2010 after the death of his longtime business partner and co-founder, Ed Linde.
Thomas is “an accomplished executive and well known throughout our industry, and he is the right person to lead the company for the future and to build on our success,” Zuckerman said in the statement.
In addition to running Boston Properties, Zuckerman is chairman and publisher of the New York Daily News, and chairman and editor in chief of US News & World Report LP.
His commentaries on politics and the economy, including a declaration that the U.S. is in a “modern-day depression,” have led to speculation that he might seek political office, including mayor of New York. Mayor Michael Bloomberg talked to Zuckerman about a possible mayoral bid this year, the New York Times reported on Jan. 7.
“There’s no way I’m going to do that,” Zuckerman said Jan. 30 on Boston Properties’ earnings conference call. “If there was such a thing as an appointed mayor of New York, I’d consider it.”