Nike Hat

Penn State Nike Gear in the Penn State Bookstore on Monday January 23, 2017.

Mark Parker, Nike’s chief executive officer and Penn State alumnus, will step down from his position in January, the company announced Tuesday.

The 63-year-old businessman graduated from the university in 1977 with a bachelor’s degree in political science. He ran for both the cross country and track teams as a student, as previously reported by The Daily Collegian.

Two years after graduating, Parker became a shoe designer for the Oregon-based company. He has been Nike’s president and CEO since 2006.

Parker will become executive chairman and John Donahoe — Nike board member and former eBay president — will take over Parker’s role, according to The New York Times.

Earlier this month, Nike shut down its elite running program, the Oregon Project, after the United States Anti-Doping Agency barred the program’s leader for doping violations. At first, Parker defended the program, but later agreed to halt it, according to The New York Times.

In June 2018, Penn State ranked second in LinkedIn’s list of schools that graduate future CEOs, as previously reported by The Daily Collegian.

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