Annaly Capital Management, one of the nation’s largest mortgage real estate investment trusts, announced Wednesday that the company’s co-founder and former CEO, Wellington Denahan, will retire as executive chairman and chairman of the board at the end of the year.

Replacing Denahan in those roles will be Kevin Keyes, who currently serves as Annaly’s CEO and president. Keyes also serves as a board member, but will be elevated to chairman of the board when Denahan officially steps down on Dec. 31, 2017.

Keyes has previous experience taking over for Denahan, as he replaced Denahan as Annaly’s CEO in 2015.

Denahan will remain on Annaly’s board, serving as board member after stepping down as executive chairman and chairman of the board.

“I’m very proud to have co-founded a company that has exhibited significant growth, outperformance over the long term and has evolved to become an industry leader,” Denahan said in a release. “I am extremely excited about Annaly’s future and the strategy that Kevin has set forth. I look forward to continuing to support Kevin and the company through my service as a member of the board.”

Jonathan Green, Annaly’s lead independent director, said that the board is “pleased” to elevate Keyes to chairman.

“Kevin is a dynamic leader who has shepherded the company through unprecedented market volatility while at the same time spearheaded our evolution from a mono-line Agency REIT to a leading diversified capital manager,” Green said.

Keyes said that he is looking forward to the company’s next phase.

“Wellington’s vision and leadership have helped the Company grow from its $102 million initial public offering in 1997 to an industry leader with a $14 billion market capitalization today,” Keyes said.

“It is my great privilege to serve as Annaly’s CEO and work alongside Wellington and the rest of the board. I’m honored that the board has appointed me as its chairman and I am committed and excited to continue to lead this great company through the next phases of growth and evolution,” Keyes added. “I am extremely confident that Annaly is uniquely positioned for the tremendous opportunities that lie ahead.”