The board will meet soon to determine the next step in finding a successor.

In a surprise move, OCLC announced late Wednesday that Jay Jordan won’t retire at the end of June after all.

According to the news release, “The OCLC Board of Trustees has concluded that rather than moving forward with the appointment of Jack B. Blount as its President and CEO, it is in the best interest of OCLC to have Jay Jordan continue serving in these capacities. Mr. Jordan has agreed to postpone his retirement to continue leading OCLC.”

OCLC did not divulge the reason for the abrupt change of plans.

“The Board of Trustees has complete confidence in the global management team and the 1,250 employees, who are working diligently to serve libraries around the world and fulfill OCLC’s mission and goals,” Chairman Larry Alford said in the release. “The Board is committed to an orderly transition of leadership and will be assessing its succession planning process as it moves forward.”

"The Board’s first priority is to assess its succession planning process and develop a plan for finding a successor to Jay. The Board will be meeting soon to determine next steps," OCLC spokesmanRobert Murphy wrote in an email to Columbus C.E.O.

Jordan, 69, had announced his retirement almost a year ago, on June 27, 2011. Blount, 60, was announced as the new president and CEO on June 8—less than two weeks ago.

Blount most recently was president and CEO of Alpha Bay Corp., a global technology company based in Salt Lake City that he founded in 2005. Previously, he was president and CEO of Dynix Corp., a library services organization acquired by Sirsi in 2005, forming SirsiDynix.

In the news release announcing Blount’s appointment, he was praised by both Alford and Sandy Yee, who chaired the board’s search committee and is dean of the Wayne State University Libraries and Library and Information Science Program.

“Our search produced several outstanding candidates for this important position,” said Alford, chief librarian at University of Toronto Libraries. “Jack Blount’s extensive leadership and management experience, background and expertise in technology, global outlook and demonstrated commitment to and appreciation of libraries will serve the cooperative well as he assumes leadership of OCLC.”

“After careful consideration and consultation with our community advisory group and search firm, we are confident that Jack Blount is well prepared to lead the OCLC cooperative into an exciting and dynamic future,” Yee said.

Jordan is the fourth CEO in OCLC’s 45-year history.

Julanne Hohbach is the editor of Columbus C.E.O.

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