Ashton-Tate on Thursday named a new president and chief operating officer, going outside the company and selecting Luther Nussbaum, 39, from the executive ranks of a computer retailing chain.
Nussbaum will report to Edward M. Esber Jr., chief executive of the Torrance-based software developer. Esber has held all four top titles at the company since August, when he was named chairman. Nussbaum, who is expected to join Ashton-Tate by Nov. 1, most recently was a senior vice president at Businessland.
Nussbaum won the job over the company's three executive vice presidents, Roy E. Folk, Ronald S. Posner and Norman H. Block, who also is chief financial officer. In a restructuring announced in June, Folk and Posner each were given additional operational duties. Folk was placed in charge of the new software products unit and Posner was named general manager of the systems, service and information division. Folk and Posner now will report to Nussbaum; Block will continue to report to Esber.
Esber said that although Folk and Posner were not "in a horse race for the job," both inside and outside candidates were considered.
It still appears too early to plot the succession at the company, however. Esber, who joined Ashton-Tate in May, 1984, is only 34. And, he said Thursday, "I have every plan of staying around."