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Shubert Chairman Philip J. Smith to Retire After 63 Years With the Company

Smith will end his tenure on June 30.

Philip J. Smith
(© Jeremy Daniel)

Philip J. Smith, Chairman and co-CEO of the Shubert Organization, and Chairman of the Shubert Foundation, will retire from the organization after 63 years on June 30. Smith will take on the title of Chairman Emeritus in his retirement.

Robert Wankel, current President and co-CEO, will become Chairman and Chief Executive Officer, and will serve as Chairman of the Shubert Foundation, beginning July 1.

Smith began his career as box office treasurer at the Imperial Theatre in 1957. He became General Manager of all the Shubert-owned theaters in 1964, and was named Shubert Vice President in 1969. In this position, he introduced the use of credit cards as a method of purchasing tickets to Broadway shows, and helped the entire industry transition into the age of computerization through the creation of Telecharge and the Times Square TKTS booth. He was named President of the organization in 1996, following the death of Bernard B. Jacobs, and Chairman and co-CEO in 2008 after the passing of Gerald Schoenfeld.

Smith was honored with a Lifetime Achievement Tony Award in 2011.

"I'm proud of the fact that the only person who worked for the Shubert Organization longer than I did was J.J. Shubert, who founded the company with his brothers in 1900," Smith said in a statement. "I have loved every minute of my long career."

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