Mosaic’s Joc O’Rourke to Succeed Jim Prokopanko as CEO

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Mosaic Co. will promote Chief Operating Officer James “Joc” O’Rourke to head the company as Jim Prokopanko plans to retire from the top post.

O’Rourke, 54, will start as chief executive officer on Aug. 5, the Plymouth, Minnesota-based company said Wednesday in a statement. A mining and mineral engineer by training, he joined the fertilizer maker in 2009 from Barrick Gold Corp. and has been COO since 2012.

Prokopanko, 61, will serve as a senior adviser to the company until his planned retirement in January. The CEO, who took time off last year to undergo chemotherapy after a cancer diagnosis, said he plans to enjoy his good health with family.

Prokopanko rose to prominence in 2011 after Mosaic, the largest publicly traded phosphate-fertilizer make, was separated from Cargill Inc. in a complex transaction. Shares of Mosaic have almost tripled since he took office as CEO in January 2007.

The split-off and distribution of Cargill’s 64 percent stake in Mosaic drew attention because it allowed the trading company’s founding family and their charitable trusts, such as the Margaret A. Cargill Philanthropies, to free up their holdings without forcing Minneapolis-based Cargill to go public.