Vince McMahon’s Resignation as CEO and Chairman of WWE Marks a Significant Transition in Professional Wrestling!

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The most influential figure in professional wrestling history is handing up the keys. Vince McMahon announced his retirement as chairman and CEO of World Wrestling Entertainment on Friday.

Vince McMahon’s Resignation as CEO and Chairman of WWE Marks a Significant Transition in Professional Wrestling!

The 76-year-old McMahon said in a WWE news release that his daughter Stephanie and current WWE president Nick Khan will take over as co-CEOs.

Vince McMahon's Resignation as CEO and Chairman of WWE Marks a Significant Transition in Professional Wrestling!

Stephanie McMahon, who has been serving as interim CEO, will also assume the role of chairperson, according to a statement released by McMahon.

McMahon had already resigned as chairman and CEO after a Wall Street Journal report disclosed a WWE board probe into a $3 million covert settlement McMahon had provided to a former WWE paralegal.

At the moment, though, McMahon retained his position as the head of WWE creative, and sources informed ESPN that McMahon’s resignation was a matter of optics.

The Wall Street Journal published a second article about alleged McMahon misconduct on July 8.

The newspaper said that the board was probing the payment of $12 million to four former WWE workers or contractors to hush sexual misconduct complaints against McMahon.

The $12 million includes an estimated $7.5 million to a former female WWE wrestler who claimed that McMahon forced her to engage in oral sex, demoted her, and then did not renew her contract in 2005 after she refused to engage in additional sexual contact with him.

McMahon’s retirement is a monumental change in the world of professional wrestling, where he has been a presence since purchasing WWE from his father in the 1980s.

McMahon created WWE into a billion-dollar brand with global reach, a promotion that has outlasted the competition for decades.

McMahon said in a statement to WWE investors on Friday, “I am extremely confident in the continued success of WWE, and I leave our company in the capable hands of an extraordinary group of Superstars, employees, and executives — in particular, Chairwoman and Co-CEO Stephanie McMahon and Co-CEO Nick Khan.”

“As the company’s largest shareholder, I will continue to assist WWE in any manner possible.

Sincere appreciation to our business and community partners, stockholders, and Board of Directors for their direction and support over the years.”

On Friday, WWE also announced that McMahon’s son-in-law and Stephanie’s husband, Paul “Triple H” Levesque, would return to the company as head of talent relations; however, it was not immediately obvious whether this was related to McMahon’s retirement.

McMahon will leave behind a legacy littered with scandals, including 1994 allegations by the United States government that he provided his wrestlers with steroids. A jury acquitted McMahon of all charges.

Vince McMahon's Resignation as CEO and Chairman of WWE Marks a Significant Transition in Professional Wrestling!

McMahon, who also worked in front of the camera as a play-by-play announcer for years, became a pivotal on-screen character during one of WWE’s most popular eras in the late 1990s.

His persona, Mr. McMahon, versus “Stone Cold” Steve Austin, a blue-collar antihero, is one of the most iconic stories in WWE history.

The rivalry helped WWE surpass WCW, the rival promotion it subsequently acquired.

In 1999, WWE became a publicly traded company. Raw and SmackDown have been among the highest-rated cable television programs since the 1990s.

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