Meat industry veteranWilliam Geoppinger, the former president & CEO ofSara Lee Foods, has joined investment committees forStockwell Capital LLC and its affiliate,Glencoe Capital, LLC, both of Chicago.

Stockwell is a private equity firm that designs and manages customized co-investment programs for institutional investors in partnership with leading private equity sponsors globally. Glencoe is a private equity firm focused on control acquisitions of lower middle-market companies.

Officials say Geoppinger has served Glencoe Capital in an advisory capacity for several years as a member of its executive network, a group of approximately 40 current and former Fortune 1000 C-level executives and entrepreneurs. Network members help identify, evaluate and execute investments. Once transactions are complete, these officials provide ongoing advice and counsel to portfolio companies, including serving on portfolio company boards of directors.

Glencoe Capital’s private equity funds have acquired several portfolio companies in the food products industry, includingSpecialty Foods Group ("SFG"), a leading producer of premium branded and private-label processed meat products;ACE Bakery, a Toronto-based artisan bakery; andFlatout, a producer and marketer of branded flatbreads.

In his capacity as a board member of ACE Bakery, officials said Geoppinger was a valuable resource for the company's bakery’s management team in driving rapid growth and significant profit improvement, which together resulted in its November 2010 sale toWeston Foods (Canada) Ltd. for CAD$110 million. Geoppinger also served on the board of directors of SFG from 2005 to 2008.

Geoppinger also advised Stockwell Capital on Stockwell Capital’s co-investment inFindus Group, Europe’s second-largest frozen food provider, andEarthbound Farm, a U.S. provider of packaged organic salad products. Stockwell Capital, which currently manages over $700 million in dedicated capital, designs and manages customized co-investment programs for institutional investors. The fund has made 53 co-investments since 2002.

"Bill Geoppinger has been an invaluable member of Glencoe Capital’s executive network and we are delighted that he has agreed to assume additional responsibilities helping the firm to assess future acquisitions as a member of our investment committee," said David S. Evans, Glencoe Capital chairman.

Geoppinger had a lengthy career with Sara Lee Foods and its predecessor companies. He joined Cincinnati-based meat processor E. Kahn’s & Sons Company as manager of sales in 1962. After Sara Lee's purchase of Kahn’s in 1966, Geoppinger became manager of sales and marketing for Kahn’s food-service division, and in 1983, he became executive vice president. In 1987, Kahn’s merged with Hillshire Farm, where Geoppinger was named president and chief executive officer in 1989. He was appointed president and CEO of Sara Lee Foods in 1999.