"The economic recovery is well under way, and barring some unanticipated event, it will continue well on into 2012," said Wick Moorman, chief executive officer of Norfolk Southern Corporation, during the company's 29th annual stockholders meeting, held today in Williamsburg.
"We at Norfolk Southern feel good about the results we are producing and are confident in our ability to produce superior service for customers and superior returns for shareholders," Moorman said. He noted that the company reported its second-highest revenues ever in 2010, a momentum that carried over into 2011. Norfolk Southern reported record revenues, income from railway operations, and earnings per share in first-quarter 2011.
Moorman said the company's investments in corridor initiatives - highlighted by the 2010 opening of the Heartland Corridor and the 2011 groundbreakings for new terminals in Alabama and Tennessee - support current and future volume growth. "These initiatives give us increased rail capacity and also provide safety and environmental benefits for the public," he said. "They are also important indicators of our commitment to sustainable business practices that create green jobs."
Moorman said the company's targeted recruitment of train-and-engine service employees to handle growing freight volumes is paying off with improved customer service. He also credited employees for the company's continued industry leadership in employee safety. The Harriman Gold Medal will be presented to Norfolk Southern for a 22nd consecutive year during ceremonies next week in Washington, D.C. "It is recognition yet again of the determination of our people to ensuring that we conduct our business safely - not only for all of us at Norfolk Southern, but for our families, our customers, and for the communities we serve," Moorman said.
In official business, stockholders re-elected four directors whose terms will expire in 2012: Gerald L. Baliles, director of the Miller Center of Public Affairs at the University of Virginia; Erskine B. Bowles, senior advisor to Carousel Capital and co-chairman of the National Commission on Fiscal Responsibility and Reform; Karen N. Horn, a partner with Brock Capital Group; and J. Paul Reason, retired admiral and former commander in chief of the U.S. Atlantic Fleet.
Stockholders also ratified the appointment of KPMG LLP as auditors and approved advisory resolutions on the compensation of executive officers and annual advisory votes on executive compensation.
Wick Moorman's remarks to stockholders and a new video, Forward, are posted in the Investors section of the NS website.
Norfolk Southern Corporation (NYSE: NSC) is one of the nation's premier transportation companies. Its Norfolk Southern Railway subsidiary operates approximately 20,000 route miles in 22 states and the District of Columbia, serves every major container port in the eastern United States, and provides efficient connections to other rail carriers. Norfolk Southern operates the most extensive intermodal network in the East and is a major transporter of coal and industrial products.