Kellner to step down as CEO of Continental

Continental Airlines Chairman and CEO Larry Kellner surprised the industry on Thursday by announcing he will step down on Jan. 1 to start a private equity group. "Turning 50 causes you to reflect," Kellner said. "I realized that if I was going to do this, I had to do it now." Kellner will be succeeded by Jeff Smisek, currently the airline's president and chief operating officer.

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