Steven Douglass, chairman and chief executive officer of family footwear retailer Payless ShoeSource Inc, leaving the company with Matthew Rubel due to take over his responsibilities as CEO.

Rubel has been the chairman and CEO of Cole Haan, a wholly-owned subsidiary of sportswear giant Nike Inc, since February 1999.

The company will name a non-executive chairman of the board at a later date.

"After more than ten years leading the company, the board of directors and I have mutually agreed that the time is right for me to leave the company and pursue new personal and business interests and opportunities", Douglass said.

Rubel commented: "We will focus on building even stronger connections with the consumer by creating emotionally enticing product, brand communications and point of sale. The company's focus on its core business, and continued strong execution of its Merchandise Authority strategy, are powerful pillars we will build upon to create long-term value."

Payless ShoeSource Inc is the largest specialty family footwear retailer in the West, operating approximately 4,646 stores.