Rocket CEO Jay Farner Announces Retirement

Jay Farner

DETROIT (PRNewswire) — Come June, for the first time in nearly three decades, Jay Farner will not be part of the team at Rocket Companies.

Rocket Companies, a Detroit-based fintech platform company consisting of tech-driven mortgage, real estate and financial services businesses, including Rocket Mortgage, Rocket Homes, Rocket Loans and Rocket Money, announced Farner, its chief executive officer since 2017, plans to retire from his position effective June 1.

At that time, Bill Emerson, longtime Rocket executive and current Vice Chairman of Rock Holdings, will assume the role of Chief Executive Officer on an interim basis.

Farner will begin transitioning his roles and responsibilities to Emerson to ensure a seamless transition on June 1. Farner has also decided to step down from his position on the Rocket Board of Directors, effective Feb. 9, and Emerson has been appointed to the board, effective immediately.

The Board of Directors has commenced a search for a permanent CEO and has retained a leading firm to support its evaluation of internal and external candidates.

“For nearly three decades Jay has poured everything he has into making our organization successful,” said Dan Gilbert, Founder and Chairman of Rocket Companies. “Since being appointed CEO of Rocket Mortgage and, subsequently, CEO of Rocket Companies in connection with the August 2020 IPO, Jay has overseen the most rapid period of growth and profitability in our 37-year history. His passion for people and vision for the future has benefitted Rocket tremendously and on behalf of the entire Board, I’d like to thank him for all of his work over the years.

“Looking forward, we are fortunate to have someone of Bill’s caliber and experience to serve as Interim CEO while the Board conducts a search for a permanent successor,” Gilbert added. “For a decade and a half, Bill served at the helm of our mortgage business – driving impressive results and setting the tone for our culture. He loves Rocket Companies and the industry, and he has remained very engaged in the business through his position at Rock Holdings. We are excited to welcome Bill back to the role and are confident in his ability to lead the Company forward.”

Farner called being part of “this amazing organization” one of the “most rewarding experiences” of his life.

“More than 27 years ago, fresh out of college, I decided to join a small mortgage company led by Dan Gilbert,” Farner said. “I never could have predicted the amazing journey that one decision would have taken me on, and I want to thank Dan for his mentorship, guidance and friendship over the years.

“Rocket Companies is full of incredible people – passionate about serving our clients, the community and each other,” he added. “While the time is right for me to focus on my family, I will certainly miss working with some of the brightest minds in the fintech industry.”

Emerson thanked Farner for “everything he has done” for the organization.

“He has been a tremendous leader and friend,” Emerson said of Farner. “His strong vision created a pathway for Rocket Companies’ continued success today and into the future. I am excited to roll up my sleeves with our team to continue driving Rocket’s incredible growth.”