As a result, Green has ended his 34-year career with CP by stepped down as president and CEO. In addition, CP's chairman Mr John Cleghorn, and four other directors have announced that they will not stand for re-election at today's annual shareholder meeting.

"The past few months witnessed a spirited debate about the future of this railway," Cleghorn told shareholders today, adding that the vote reflects a strong desire for change among shareholders.

Pershing Square now has seven directors on the new 16-member CP board including its founder and CEO Mr Bill Ackman. "The proxy contest gave shareholders a choice," Ackman told shareholders. "With the overwhelming support from shareholders, we have a loud and clear mandate for change to take the company to higher levels of performance and achievement. We will not make progress overnight, but will deliver on our commitment to make this one of the best railways in the world."

This should pave the way for Mr E Hunter Harrison to succeed Green. Harrison was CEO of Canadian National from 2003 to 2009 where he was credited with improving CN's financial performance and driving down its operating ratio, which at 63.5% is currently the lowest of the North American Class 1 railways. CP on the other hand has an operating ratio of 81.3%, the worst in North America.