Exxon replaces Trump's secretary of State pick Tillerson

ExxonMobil has named company president Darren Woods (left) to replace US President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of state Rex Tillerson (right).
ExxonMobil has named company president Darren Woods (left) to replace US President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of state Rex Tillerson (right).PHOTOS: BLOOMBERG, EXXONMOBIL

NEW YORK (AFP) - Global oil giant ExxonMobil on Wednesday (Dec 14) named company President Darren Woods as CEO to replace Rex Tillerson, President-elect Donald Trump's choice for secretary of State.

Tillerson will retire next month after 41 years with the world's largest publicly-traded oil and gas producer, ExxonMobil said in a statement.

After considering an array of political veterans, Trump on Tuesday (Dec 13) announced the surprise choice of the oil executive to run US diplomacy, drawing mixed reviews from lawmakers, and criticism due to Tillerson's ties to Russian President Vladimir Putin.

Tillerson had been due to retire in March but political developments required that he leave sooner, the company said in a statement.

"After consideration, Tillerson concluded, and the board agreed, that given the significant requirements associated with the confirmation process, it was appropriate to move the retirement date," it said.

Woods, 51, joined Exxon Mobil in 1992, holding posts in refining, chemical production, among others, and joined the company's board and became president in January of this year.