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Spokane, Washington  Est. May 19, 1883

Costco CEO to step down

Costco President and CEO Craig Jelinek addresses the annual shareholders meeting, Tuesday, Jan. 30, 2018, at Meydenbauer Center in Bellevue. He announced this week that he is leaving the company.   (Ken Lambert/Seattle Times )
By Renata Geraldo Seattle Times

Costco CEO Craig Jelinek is stepping down as CEO, the company announced Wednesday. His last day will be Jan. 1.

Issaquah-based Costco’s board of directors selected Ron Vachris, the company’s president and chief operating officer, as the next CEO.

“This is the culmination of the long-standing succession plan that Craig has discussed with the Board,” Costco said in a statement.

After stepping down as CEO, Jelinek will remain with Costco until April in an advisory role assisting Vachris with the transition.

Jelinek will also stay on the board and stand for reelection at the company’s annual meeting in January.

Jelinek was selected as CEO in 2012 after Costco co-founder James Sinegal stepped down.

At the time, Jelinek was the company’s chief operating officer and president.