Bombardier executive chairman Pierre Beaudoin said he intends to give up his executive role at the Canadian company June 30, but will stay on as non-executive chairman of Bombardier’s board of directors.

Beaudoin was president and CEO of Bombardier from 2008-2015, when he was replaced in those roles by Alain Bellemare. Beaudoin took over as CEO in 2008 from his father, Laurent Beaudoin, son-in-law of the company’s founder, Joseph-Armand Bombardier. Beaudoin ceding any executive duties at the company would leave Bellemare as the company’s top executive.

Beaudoin said the move was part of an ongoing leadership transition process. “This change reflects the very successful transition of Bombardier’s executive leadership to [Bellemare] over the past two years,” he said in a statement, adding, “The company is firmly on the right path, with a very strong leadership team now in place to execute its turnaround plan and return Bombardier to long-term, sustainable growth.”

Canadian media widely portrayed the move as an effort by Bombardier to quell the domestic controversy over a company plan, now largely scrapped, calling for Beaudoin and other senior executives to receive massive pay increases. There was an uproar in Canada over the proposed pay increases because Bombardier had gained taxpayer support to boost the CSeries program. The federal government is providing Bombardier with C$372.5 million ($272 million) in repayable support over four years for both the CSeries and Global 7000 aircraft programs. In addition, the Quebec provincial government has invested $1 billion for a 49% stake in the CSeries program.

La Caisse de dépôt et placement du Québec, an institutional investor that manages funds primarily for public pension and insurance plans, is a prominent Bombardier stakeholder. It had said in recent days it was withholding its support for Beaudoin to remain as executive chairman of the Bombardier board over what it called the board’s “lapse of governance” in promoting executive pay increases while receiving government support.

The government support on the CSeries program has also caused international controversy—both Embraer and Boeing have alleged Bombardier was unfairly able to offer the aircraft to Delta Air Lines, which placed a firm order for 75 CS100s last year, at below market prices. Bombardier has denied the charge.

Aaron Karp aaron.karp@penton.com