William Swanson has been CEO of Raytheon since 2003.Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our Smugmug site.
William Swanson has been CEO of Raytheon since 2003.

Sun staff photos can be ordered by visiting our Smugmug site.

WALTHAM (AP) -- Raytheon Corp. CEO William Swanson plans to step down from his post at the defense contractor in March.

Swanson, who turns 65 next month, has served as CEO of the Waltham-based company since 2003. He will remain as chairman while the company completes the transition process.

Raytheon said Wednesday that Swanson will be succeeded by Executive Vice President and Chief Operating Officer Thomas Kennedy. The CEO appointment is effective on March 31.

The 58-year-old Kennedy was also named as a board member, effective Wednesday.

Raytheon's Integrated Defense Systems unit is based in Tewksbury. It also has local operations in Billerica.