Johnny Walker has stepped down as president of Baja Marine Corp. in Washington, N.C., after five years with the company, which builds the Baja, Donzi Marine, Fountain Powerboats and Pro-Line brands. Walker, who described himself as “semi-retired” in a telephone interview this afternoon, said it was time for a change but that he will continue as special advisor to the company’s board of directors.
For the past five years, Baja (above) has been one of four powerboat brands under Walker’s management.
“I came here five years ago to show them how to build Pro-Line and Donzi boats, and that’s what I did,” he said. “While I will continue to serve as an advisor to the board, it’s time to move on. I resigned my position as president, effective Nov. 1.”
Walker, who replaced Fountain Powerboats founder Reggie Fountain as chief executive officer of the company, faced challenging times during a five-year tenure that saw Baja Marine and Reggie Fountain drop lawsuits against one another in February this year. While the Pro-Line brand of center consoles reportedly regained its health since the recession of 2008, the Baja, Donzi and Fountain lines have continued to struggle with new-boat sales, particularly on the sportboat side.
According to Walker, Joe Polidore is handling “day-to-day” operations for the company. (Polidore could not be reached earlier today before this story went live.) Carol Price will continue as Baja Marine’s vice president/sales administration. (Price also could not be reached earlier today before this story went live.)
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