ST. PETERSBURG, Fla. -- The Florida Orchestra President & CEO, Michael Pastreich, is stepping down after more than a decade of growth.

He is the longest serving CEO in the Orchestra's 50-year history.

  • TFO just finished 50th anniversary season, with record attendance
  • Michael Pastreich took post in October 2007
  • He is stepping down, will help with transition through September

"This is the right time," said Pastreich, who took the helm in October 2007. "As I've reflected on an astounding 50th anniversary season, I see how far TFO has come in my nearly 11 years here, and I'm proud and honored to play a key role in its success. Now it's time to take a break, recharge and explore my own opportunities. It's an exciting world."

The Orchestra said it achieved record concert attendance in its 50th season and has an endowment that has brown from $8 million to $21 million since Pastreich's arrival.

Pastreich will help with the transition through September.

The Orchestra said its finances significantly improved as ticket sales increased each season of Pastreich's tenure.

TFO's anniversary celebration included a sold-out gala concert with rock legend Sting, and eight works by Florida composers commissioned and premiered by TFO. Counting free and paid seats, attendance was about 215,000.