Red Hat extends Szulik's time as chairman

Red Hat is keeping Matthew Szulik around at least a little longer.

The Raleigh-based software company has agreed to extend Szulik's term as chairman for another year, until Feb. 28, 2011, the company reported in a filing with the Securities and Exchange Commission.

Szulik ran Red Hat for nearly a decade before stepping down as CEO in early 2008 to attend to family health matters. James Whitehurst, a former Delta Air Lines executive, took over as CEO in January 2008.

Szulik joined Red Hat in 1998 and helped turn it into one of the Triangle's most successful technology companies. Red Hat has continued to expand during the economic slump as more corporations and government agencies use its Linux computer-operating software as a cheaper alternative to programs such as Microsoft's Windows.

Red Hat shares have more than doubled in the past year and closed Thursday at $29.88.

Under his new employment agreement, Szulik will receive $90,000 in cash, the company reported in its SEC filing. He'll also be eligible to receive restricted stock worth $175,000.

Szulik also recently joined the board of Zenph Studios, a local company developing music software and technology.

Read Szulik's 2007 letter announcing his plans to step down as CEO online here.