(Bloomberg) -- Progressive Corp., the fourth-largest U.S. auto insurer, said Glenn Renwick is stepping down as chief executive officer after more than 15 years in that role.

Tricia Griffith, who is chief operating officer of personal lines, will replace him as CEO on July 1 and join the board of directors at the time, the Mayfield Village, Ohio-based company said Thursday in a statement. Renwick will stay on as executive chairman.

[Check out Griffith's Women in Insurance Leadership profile from 2012]

She is replacing an executive who won market share by selling coverage directly to customers over the phone or Internet, while rivals such as Allstate Corp. and State Farm Mutual Automobile Insurance Co. traditionally depended on agents. He was also a pioneer in the use of technology to track customers’ driving habits, which allowed him to offer better prices to the safest motorists. Renwick also pushed into residential coverage with the acquisition last year of ARX Holding Corp.

“Since he became CEO in 2000, the company’s market capitalization has increased by approximately 155 percent to more than $19 billion, and written premiums have more than tripled,” Stephen Hardis, lead independent director, said in the statement. “The board is confident that Tricia’s extensive experience with numerous aspects of the company, operational acumen and exceptional track record make her the ideal candidate to lead Progressive.”

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