WASHINGTON, Dec. 13 /PRNewswire/ -- The American Red Cross Board of Governors announced today that Marsha J. Evans has submitted her resignation as President and CEO, effective at the end of the month. Jack McGuire, Executive Vice President of American Red Cross Biomedical Services, has been named interim President and CEO. The organization will maintain its current strategy, direction and programs and will continue to ensure the continuity and stability of ongoing Red Cross operations. The Board will begin the search for a permanent successor as soon as possible. About Jack McGuire McGuire has served in his current role since March 2004 following a career of more than 22 years as a leader in the biomedical field, having served most recently as president of Whatman, PLC North America, a UK-based manufacturer of laboratory and industrial products. As head of Biomedical Services, he has fostered an improved relationship with the Food and Drug Administration and refocused the $2.2 billion program on the core Red Cross mission of blood collection and testing, having divested the organization of its tissue and plasma lines of business. The following message is from Marty Evans to Red Cross volunteers and staff: As some of you may know, I was fortunate enough to take some time off and spend Thanksgiving week with my husband. This afforded me a rare opportunity for personal contemplation on my future plans, along with some reflection on what we have achieved together over the past three-plus years at the American Red Cross. I had been thinking about leaving the organization after my three-year anniversary on August 5, but in the aftermath of Hurricane Katrina, I knew I had to stay and lead our pivotal response to that epic tragedy. Now, with our successful hurricane response continuing in steady hands, I believe the time is right to step down as your President and CEO at the end of this month. I look forward to spending more time with my family. I look back with great pride on our accomplishments over the past years. I am still amazed at our ability to mobilize 220,000 volunteers for our historic and ongoing response to Hurricanes Katrina and Rita. In addition to our strengthened disaster response, I am very pleased by the effectiveness of our Service Area system in enhancing chapter capacity. I firmly believe that our enhanced efforts to help our neighbors prepare for emergencies continue to save lives every day. I am also gratified by our deepened relationship with our donors and supporters, and the remarkable turnaround we have achieved in the quality of our Biomedical operations and relationship with the FDA, our regulatory agency. I strongly believe the American Red Cross finds itself on solid footing today and is far better prepared to face the challenges of the future than when I joined you all in August 2002, and this is reflected in the renewed trust and confidence voiced in us by the American people. In my ongoing discussions with the Board of Governors, we consistently agreed on the direction and goals for the organization. I can assure you that the Board shares my admiration over what our employees and volunteers have accomplished, especially during the year that is now drawing to a close. I hope you will give my successor Jack McGuire the same exceptional support you have given me. I cannot overstate what a privilege it has been to serve with each and every one of you, the employees and volunteers who sacrifice so much for our vital mission of service. In all my years of experience I have never encountered a group of people who spring from so many diverse walks of life and yet are so unified in their dedication to a single cause. Your achievements are truly without peer. As I leave you, I want you to know that I will always consider myself a Red Crosser. I will forever remember and treasure my time as your leader, and I thank you for the support and kindnesses given me, and your tireless efforts to help those who need it most. The following is from Bonnie McElveen-Hunter, Chairman of the Board of Governors, to Red Cross volunteers and staff: It has been a privilege to work alongside Marty Evans for the past year and a half. In that brief period we have experienced the four back-to-back hurricanes of 2004, the unprecedented international response to the December 2004 tsunami, and of course the devastation of Hurricane Katrina. In each of these events, Marty provided the leadership and the vision that helped ensure our success. In fact, we are indebted to Marty for the energy she has displayed in working to overcome the challenges facing the American Red Cross when she became President and CEO in 2002. Since that time, she has led an effective transformation of the organization's headquarters, helped put Biomedical Services on the path to sustained success and introduced the highly effective Service Area system which enables our chapters to respond more effectively to disaster. She leaves the Red Cross in a much stronger position than it was when she began her tenure. We fully understand the demands placed on her personal life by her leadership on behalf of the organization, and we join every American Red Cross employee and volunteer in wishing Marty and Jerry the very best. The Board is committed to maintaining the current course of the organization. We have appointed Jack McGuire, Executive Vice President of Biomedical Services, to serve as interim President and CEO. Jack's career includes more than 22 years as a leader in the biomedical field, and he will continue to head Biomedical Services during this time. I want to underscore the importance of ensuring the continuity and stability of our organization. We anticipate no major changes in strategic direction, and expect to continue all initiatives currently underway. Our focus will continue to be on ensuring a healthy and safe blood supply, preparing for and responding to natural and man-made disasters, and providing lifesaving Red Cross services in our neighborhoods and, when called, around the globe. We believe the organization is embarked upon the right course. As always, it is the volunteers upon whom we will continue to rely, and the Board and I echo Marty's appreciation for their dedication. I know each of you will join me and the Board in thanking Marty for her many achievements, and in welcoming Jack as interim President and CEO.
SOURCE American Red Cross