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John Keister

Marchex co-founder John Keister, who has served as the company’s chief operating officer and president over the years and most recently filled the role of executive vice chairman, has announced his resignation from the company effective immediately. Keister had served on the board of Marchex since it was founded in January 2003 along with former Go2Net executives Pete Christothoulou; Russ Horowitz and Ethan Caldwell.

In a SEC filing today, the company said that Keister’s resignation was “not the result of any disagreement with Marchex on any matter relating to Marchex’s operations, policies or practices.” He intends to “pursue other opportunities,” according to the filing.

The company has morphed quite a bit in the past decade. Last year, Marchex’s board authorized a plan to split into two separate public companies, one operating under the name of Marchex and the other under the name of Archeo. The Marchex assets will include the mobile and call advertising business, while Archeo will consist of a domain name and advertising marketplace.

The company’s stock is up nearly 75 percent in the past year, but it is down 54 percent in the past five years.

UPDATE: CEO Russ Horowitz offered this statement on Keister’s departure:

John and I have been friends and have worked together for many years. John has dedicated a lot of time and energy over the years at Marchex and now wants to explore other ventures and opportunities – and we look forward to seeing what he does next.  While we are not adding anyone to the board at this time, our board will look for new candidates as we go forward.

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