The chief executive officer of Canadian Pacific Railway will retire in May, the company announced Wednesday.

Robert Ritchie will step down following the company's annual general meeting on May 5. He will be replaced by Fred Green, the company's president since last November.

Ritchie has led CP (TSX:CP) since 1995. He first joined the company in 1972.

"During his tenure, the CPR was able to rebuild its track network, increase its capacity, renew its locomotive fleet, revitalize its rolling stock, modernize its IT systems and evolve into one of the safest railways in North America," said chairman Tel Newall.

Newall is also set to retire as chairman at the coming annual meeting. He will be replaced by director John Cleghorn, former chief executive officer and chairman of Royal Bank.

In a separate announcement, CP Rail also said it was boosting its quarterly dividend by 25 per cent – from 15 to 18.75 cents per common share.

CP shares closed at $60.49 up $1.85 on the TSX.