Contract sales firm PDI has announced the retirement of its CEO Michael Marquard.

In a statement issued by the company today, PDI said it will immediately begin a search for a new CEO. While the search is under way, John Dugan, chairman of the board, former CEO and founder of the company, will play a more active role in overseeing operations, PDI said. Jeffrey Smith, PDI’s EVP, finance and CFO, has been named interim CEO.

Marquad joined PDI as CEO in May 2006. Prior to joining PDI he was president of Mylan Bertek Pharmaceuticals, VP of Mylan Laboratories and SVP of US sales for Wyeth, where he led a 5,000-person US sales organization. Marquard began his career as a medical sales rep with Lederle Laboratories.