Leaders selected for Knife River once spinoff is complete

By |  February 21, 2023

Knife River Corp Logo

MDU Resources Group expects its separation of Knife River Corp. to be completed in the second quarter this year.

As the separation nears, MDU’s board of directors selected the management team that will steer Knife River.

According to MDU, Brian Gray will lead Knife River as president and CEO effective March 1. Gray, who has 29 years of experience at Knife River, served as president of Knife River’s Northwest region prior to being named company president in January.

Current CEO David Barney will become a senior advisor to the company at that time, providing support during Knife River’s transition to a standalone company while assisting with other projects.

“MDU Resources and Knife River have deep benches of talented and seasoned leaders, and we have been preparing for this succession in leadership for some time,” says Dennis Johnson, chair of the board at MDU Resources. “These executives will lead Knife River to successfully serve, with integrity, its customers, employees and communities while creating shareholder value.”

Additionally, MDU says Nathan Ring will become Knife River’s CFO. Ring currently serves Knife River as vice president of business development. He has 21 years of experience with MDU companies.

Karl Liepitz will become vice president, chief legal officer and secretary at Knife River. Liepitz is currently vice president, general counsel and secretary of MDU, with 19 years of experience at the company.

Trevor Hastings will become Knife River’s COO. Hastings is currently the president and CEO of WBI Energy, an MDU subsidiary. He has 27 years of experience with MDU companies, including 10 with Knife River as vice president of business development and operations support.

Other leaders who will serve Knife River upon its separation from MDU are Nancy Christenson, Glenn Pladsen and John Quade.

Christenson will remain vice president of administration, with oversight of human resources, compensation and benefits, compliance and employee relations. She has 45 years of experience with Knife River.

Pladsen will remain Knife River’s vice president of support services, with oversight of information technology, safety, environmental management, training, capital budgeting and national accounts. He has 16 years of experience with Knife River.

Quade was named vice president of business development at Knife River. He has 28 years of experience with Knife River and previously served as president of the company’s North Central region. He held that position since 2012.

“We have well-executed, long-term succession plans in place across our organization and expect a seamless transition with this management team at Knife River and existing leadership at MDU Resources as we become two publicly traded companies,” says David Goodin, president and CEO of MDU.

Kevin Yanik

About the Author:

Kevin Yanik is editor-in-chief of Pit & Quarry. He can be reached at 216-706-3724 or kyanik@northcoastmedia.net.

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