13 CEOs who didn't make it to 2020

McDonald's, Boeing, Gap, NASCAR, Juul, to name a few

The year 2019 saw the most CEO departures since firm Challenger, Gray & Christmas began tracking the data in 2002.

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Some of the departures were planned, some were not especially for those companies embroiled in crisis.

FOX Business compiled a list of 13 of the more prevalent CEOs whose careers with the companies changed before 2020 started.

Dennis Muilenburg - Boeing

Boeing CEO Dennis Muilenburg resigned Dec. 23 amid the controversy surrounding the company's beleaguered 737 MAX jet, the aerospace giant said.

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The Chicago-based planemaker said the leadership change was made in an effort to "bring renewed commitment to transparency better communication with regulators and customers in safely returning the 737 MAX to service."

AP Photo/Andrew Harnik

"Alongside Juul, Boeing experienced the largest crisis of the year," Jordan Cohen, chief marketing officer of New York City communications firm North 6th Agency, told FOX Business. "Muilenburg took too long to react, and when he did, Boeing's action plan was never really clear. The result has been a loss in trust by the public, the airlines, the stock market -- everyone."

The company said David Calhoun, Boeing's current chairman, will replace Muilenburg as president and CEO beginning Jan. 13, 2020.

Adam Neumann – WeWork

WeWork CEO Adam Neumann stepped down Sept. 24.

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A week prior to his resignation, WeWork shelved plans for its initial public offering due to investor concerns over its business model, valuation and governance standards, which allow Neumann’s shares to have 20 times the voting power of ordinary shareholders'. Since the company has had even more setbacks.

AP Photo/Mark Lennihan, File

"Neumann's resignation was even more profoundly impactful than previous 'Bad Boy CEO Extraordinaire' Travis Kalanick's ouster," Cohen said. "Beyond the stories of modern-day corporate excess, shady dealings cast a shadow of doubt over the entire company that sent it into a now seemingly never-ending tailspin."

In November, WeWork laid off about 2,400 employees globally, but in December, it opened more than 50 new buildings in cities across the world, with plans to open more soon.

Patrick Byrne – Overstock

Overstock founder and CEO Patrick Byrne resigned on Aug. 22 after 20 years at the company amid his ties to a government investigation related to the 2016 election and a Russian spy.

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In an interview with FOX Business’ "Varney & Co.", Byrne said the investigation is "all about political espionage" and that he thinks “we are about to see the biggest scandal in American history.”

Steven Ferdman/Getty Images

In October, Byrne told FOX Business' Charles Gasparino that he’s hanging out in Bali, Indonesia, living near a secluded beach with little connection to the outside world.

Steve Easterbrook – McDonald’s

McDonald’s chief executive officer Steve Easterbrook was pushed out of the company on Nov. 3 after violating company policy by engaging in a consensual relationship with an employee.

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MCDMCDONALD'S CORP.
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The fast-food giant said the former president and CEO demonstrated poor judgment, and that McDonald’s forbids managers from having romantic relationships with direct or indirect subordinates.

AP Photo/Richard Drew, File

"Easterbrook was widely credited with McDonald's turnaround," Cohen said. "His ouster immediately sent the company's stock tumbling, but the Board's hands were tied. The company acted swiftly and decisively, though, to protect its image and its interests."

As a result, Easterbrook also stepped down as a member of Walmart's board of directors.

He did, however, leave with a generous pay package, according to reports.

Kevin Plank – Under Armour

On Oct. 22, Under Armour announced CEO Kevin Plank would hand over the reins of the American athletic-wear company at the end of the year.

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Plank founded the company in 1996.

AP Photo/Richard Drew, File

"Another CEO who became embroiled in controversy and his ethics taken under question, it was time for Plank to go," Cohen said.

President and Chief Operating Officer Patrik Frisk will succeed Plank, who will become executive chairman and brand chief.

Kevin Burns – Juul

Juul Labs CEO Kevin Burns resigned on Sept. 25.

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Burns’ resignation came two weeks after the Trump administration moved to ban flavored e-cigarettes from the market. The White House blamed flavored e-cigarettes for the “surging” use of the products among teens and young adults.

Getty/You Tube (Getty Images)

"Another example of a CEO who took too long to respond to a crisis and handled it poorly," Cohen said of Burns. "However, with the allegations of misconduct so egregious at such a massive scale ... there may be a hit to the Juul business, but parent company Altria is doing as well as ever."

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Burns was replaced by K.C. Crosthwaite, an executive at Altria Group, which owns a 35 percent stake in the e-cigarette maker.

Brian France – NASCAR

The chairman and CEO of NASCAR Brian France took an indefinite leave of absence from the auto racing organization back in August 2018 after he was arrested for driving under the influence Sunday.

NASCAR'S MANAGEMENT IS APPALLING: DAGEN MCDOWELL

France was pulled over after driving through a stop sign, and police found oxycodone pills on his possession. Brian France served as NASCAR's chairman and CEO since 2003.

Brian France gives opening remarks in this Jan. 23, 2017, file photo (Jeff Siner/The Charlotte Observer via AP)

NASCAR quickly named Vice Chairman and Executive Vice President Jim France as its interim chairman and CEO, but he took over in a more official capacity in February.

Larry Page – Alphabet

Google co-founder Larry Page announced on Dec. 4 he would step down from his role at the tech firm’s parent company, Alphabet.

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Page co-founded Google in 1998 and has an estimated net worth of more than $62 billion. Alphabet was created in 2015 to separate Google's core business from other initiatives, such as the self-driving car unit Waymo.

UNITED STATES: SCIENCE TECHNOLOGY BUSINESS EDUCATION

Google CEO Sundar Pichai replaced Page.

"Sundar Pichai has risen to the occasion and has come across as the right person to lead Alphabet into its next phase of growth after Page and Brin," Cohen said.

In December, the company disclosed that Pichai could earn north of $300 million in compensation.

Mark Okerstrom – Expedia

Expedia's chief executive officer Mark Okerstrom resigned on Dec. 4 following a disagreement with the board over the online travel company's business strategy.

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CFO Alan Pickerill also resigned.

David Ryder/Bloomberg via Getty Images

The Skift's research team calculated Okerstrom's exit package could be worth about $11.8 million.

Art Peck – Gap

Gap CEO Art Peck announced he was leaving the retailer on Nov. 7.

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The news was delivered as the company updated its financial guidance. Gap cuts its full-year revenue outlook and acknowledged industry headwinds.

Art Peck

All three brands -- Gap, Banana Republic and Old Navy -- reported negative sales during the quarter.

Mark Parker – Nike

On Oct. 22, Nike announced its CEO Mark Parker would step down in January 2020.

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Parker has served as Nike's CEO since 2006 and added chairman and president titles in 2016.

Photo by Mike Coppola/Getty Images

John Donahoe, the former eBay CEO and a member of Nike's board of directors, will succeed Parker as CEO effective Jan. 13, 2020.

Melanie Whelan – SoulCycle

SoulCycle CEO Melanie Whelan resigned from her position on Nov. 26, a decision which was reportedly mutually agreed upon, a source with knowledge of the situation told FOX Business.

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Whelan had served as SoulCycle CEO since 2015.

Melanie Whelan attends Champion Equality. Make It Your Business Panel in celebration of Women's Equality Day at Neuehouse on August 23, 2017 in New York City. (Photo by John Lamparski/WireImage)

SoulCycle CFO Sunder Reddy has served as interim CEO until the fitness brand name a permanent replacement.

Oscar Munoz – United Airlines

United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz stepped down from his position on Dec. 5 and will become executive chairman in 2020.

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"Seems like things are on the right track for United financially, and the leadership transition is by all intents and purposes 'a normal one' compared to most of the others this year," Cohen said.

The airline’s president, J. Scott Kirby, will succeed Munoz as chief executive in May 2020.

Oscar Munoz speaks during the 2017 Aviation Summit hosted by the U.S. Chamber Of Commerce in Washington, D.C., on March 2, 2017.

Kirby, who has served three decades in the commercial airline business, was recruited to United in August 2016 by Munoz.

FOX Business' Matthew Kazin, Ken Martin, Stephanie Pagones, Jonathan Garber and Thomas Barrabi, Reuters and The Associated Press contributed to this report.