ARLINGTON, VA-AvalonBay Communities chairman and CEO Bryce Blair has announced that he will be stepping down from his post at year’s end. Taking his place will be Timothy J. Naughton, the company’s president, who will then assume the additional position of CEO. Blair will remain as chairman through 2012, during which he will spend half of his time focusing on AvalonBay’s development pipeline. The news follows the REIT’s announcement last week that it was increasing its outlook for earnings per share.

Blair did not provide a particular reason for his resignation in the statement announcing the succession plan. After 25 years with the REIT, ten of which spent as CEO, Blair says the timing was right to leave. “I have served as AvalonBay’s CEO for over 10 years and have been with the company for over 25 years,” Blair said in a release announcing the move. “We are well positioned for the future, and consequently I felt that the time was right for me personally and for AvalonBay to initiate a leadership transition.”

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