Esser to Replace Robbins at Cox

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Cox Communications Inc. said Tuesday that president and CEO James O. Robbins will retire at the end of the year.

Executive vice president and chief operating officer Patrick J. Esser will become president of the MSO upon Robbins’ retirement.

Robbins has led Cox Communications for two decades.

Esser joined the MSO in 1979 as director of programming for its system in Hampton Roads, Va. In 1981, he was part of the original management team that pioneered Cox Communications' local ad-sales division, CableRep Advertising.

In 1991, Esser was promoted to VP of advertising sales, later being named senior VP of operations for the Western division before assuming his most recent titles.

“Pat's extensive experience in all facets of operations, coupled with his commitment to service excellence, makes him the perfect choice for this position,” Robbins said in a prepared statement. “I wish him the very best as he continues making his mark at Cox.”

In other Cox news, Jimmy W. Hayes has rejoined parent company Cox Enterprises Inc. as executive VP, and he will assume the role of president and COO at year-end, when Dennis Berry will become vice chair.

Berry is succeeding David Easterly, who will retire from that position while remaining on Cox Enterprises’ board.

Hayes had been executive VP of finance and chief financial officer at Cox Communications.

“Jimmy's extensive knowledge of the Cox culture and its companies is an extremely valuable asset as we make strategic decisions to grow our business,” Cox Enterprises chairman and CEO James C. Kennedy said in a prepared statement.

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