Research Triangle Foundation COO Liz Rooks to retire

Liz Rooks, the chief operating officer of the Research Triangle Foundation, is retiring at the end of the year.

Mason Ailstock, the foundation’s current vice president of development, has taken over the role of COO, effective June 1, the organization announced Thursday. Rooks will continue to work with Ailstock until her retirement.

Rooks has worked for the foundation, which manages Research Triangle Park, for more than 25 years.

“Liz Rooks is an institution,” said Bob Geolas, the foundation’s president and CEO, in a statement. “Her guidance throughout my first few years with The Foundation has been incredibly beneficial. Without her insight, the RTP would not be on the path forward that it is today.”

Rooks worked on many of the park’s long- and short-term projects over the years, including implementing a master plan for the southern portion of RTP, overseeing the construction of three lakes in the park, and taking the lead in adding recreational amenities within RTP.