National Restaurant Association, Washington, D.C.
Newly elected officers for a 1-year term are Joseph Kadow, executive vice president and chief legal officer of Bloomin' Brands, Inc., as chairman. He began his career at Bloomin' Brands in 1994 as senior vice president, general counsel and secretary. He was previously a partner in BakerHostetler. Kadow is a member of the Board of Directors and Audit Committee of The Habit Restaurants, Inc. New vice chairman is Jeff Davis, chairman of United States Beef Corp., what is considered to be Arby's Restaurant Group's largest franchisee and the first Taco Bueno Restaurants franchisee. Davis is on the board of the Oklahoma Restaurant Association and chairs the Arby's Franchise Association. Jay Stieber, executive vice president and general counsel of Lettuce Entertain You Enterprises, Inc., was elected treasurer. Stieber has been with Lettuce since 1995. He is a past chair of the Illinois Restaurant Association, where he continues to serve on the Executive Committee. He is also a member of the board of directors of the Chicagoland Chamber of Commerce and the board of the Chamber's PAC.
The Kroger Co., Cincinnati
Nashville division president Rick Going announced his retirement, effective Feb. 27, after 35 years with the company, with Zane Day, currently vice president of operations in the South division, tapped to succeed him. Going joined Kroger in 1981 as a management trainee in the Cincinnati/Dayton division. He advanced to serve in many leadership roles in the stores, districts, operations and merchandising teams. He was promoted to vice president of operations for the Cincinnati/Dayton division in 1999, and then vice president of merchandising in the same division in 2002. In 2007, Going was promoted to president of the new Michigan division, which was created when the former Great Lakes division split into what are now the Columbus and Michigan divisions. He was named to his current role in Nashville in 2013, when the former Mid-South division split to form the Nashville and Louisville divisions. Day began his career with Smith's in 1974. He went on to serve in various leadership roles, including store manager and director of merchandising. In 1998, Day was named director of procurement at Fred Meyer's Tolleson distribution center. In 2000, he was named director of deli for the Fry's division, before moving to a similar role in the Smith's division in 2003. At Smith's, Day was promoted to district manager and vice president of merchandising before being named to his current role, vice president of operations, in 2015. Meanwhile, Katie Wolfram will serve as president of Kroger's Central division, operates stores in Indiana, Illinois and Eastern Missouri, succeeding Jeff Burt, who was recently named president of the company's Fred Meyer division. Wolfram began her career with Kroger in 1979 as an assistant store manager in the Cincinnati/Dayton division. She later served as manager of merchandising systems development and manager of consumer research at Kroger's general office. Wolfram also served in several leadership positions in Kroger Manufacturing, including senior marketing manager and director of sales and marketing. In 2003, she was promoted to vice president of sales and operations for Kroger Manufacturing. In 2005, she joined the King Soopers division as vice president of merchandising. She was named to her current role, vice president of merchandising in the Central division, in 2014.
SUPERVALU INC., Eden Prairie, Minn.
Mark Gross was named president and CEO, effective Feb. 5, succeeding Sam Duncan, who announced in October 2015 that he will be retiring. Gross will be appointed to the board effective March 1. Gross joins SUPERVALU with 20 years of grocery and wholesale leadership experience. From 1997-2006, he worked at C&S Wholesale Grocers, serving as co-president of overall operations from 2005-2006. Also during his tenure with C&S, Gross served as chief financial officer, general counsel and president of its affiliated retail grocery operations. For the past decade, Gross has led Surry Investment Advisors, a firm he founded, and has assisted grocery clients on several multi-billion dollar acquisitions and divestitures.
Seaboard Triumph Foods, Shawnee Mission, Kan.
Mark Porter will join the joint venture between Seaboard Foods and Triumph Foods, LLC as chief operating officer, based at the company’s new Sioux City, Iowa, pork processing facility. Previously, Porter was vice president, operations with AdvancePierre Foods, where he was responsible for the nationwide manufacturing network. Porter's prior professional experience includes operational roles with well-respected food companies, and eight years in the U.S. Navy as a Submarine Operations Officer.
Tyson Foods, Inc., Springdale, Ark.
Dan Zelenka was promoted to vice president of laboratory services, replacing Neal Apple, who retired December 2015. Zelenka began his career with Tyson Foods in 1986 as a geneticist, and has made significant contributions to the company’s use of statistical process control in operations, food safety and quality management programs. In his new role, Zelenka will continue to lead the statistics and experimental design team, in addition to his new laboratory services responsibilities. Laboratory Services is a network of 18 laboratories, providing Tyson Foods and its customers with research, analytical, chemistry, microbiology and serology services.
Smashburger, Denver, Colo.
Michael Nolan was appointed new executive vice president and chief development officer to oversee the company’s development (real estate, construction, design, facilities), franchise sales and IT departments.Previously, Nolan managed the franchising and development at Corner Bakery, and maintains more than 25 years of experience in restaurant development strategy and executive level management. Nolan also held executive level management positions at Bloomin’ Brands, Inc., where he oversaw the restaurant development strategy for more than 1,500 locations across 26 countries.
Ruth’s Hospitality Group, Orlando, Fla.
The parent company of Ruth’s Chris Steak House announced the retirement of John McDonald III, vice president-general counsel, chief compliance officer and corporate secretary from Ruth’s Hospitality Group. McDonald maintains over 40 years of experience, including election and service as Justice of the Peace for the 4th Ward in Tammany Parish, La., serving as general counsel for both NYSE- and NASDAQ-listed companies and 25 years of private practice. For the last 10 years, he has worked for Ruth’s Hospitality Group. Crossland maintains more than 40 years of experience in the culinary industry, including leading food and beverage development for several major U.S. restaurant brands, including Darden Restaurants, Steak and Ale, Bennigan’s, TGI Fridays, and most recently, Ruth’s Chris. Beginning Feb. 1, McDonald will transition his role to Alice Givens, who joins as vice president-general counsel, chief compliance officer and corporate secretary. Givens has nearly 20 years of corporate legal experience, and most recently served for over eight years as vice president and associate general counsel at J. Crew Group, Inc., where she led in-house counsel focusing on securities, corporate governance and compliance and franchising. Meanwhile, Susie Gorsline was named chief people officer. Prior to joining Ruth’s, Gorsline has held a number of human resources leadership positions, including senior vice president of human resources, vice president of organizational development and vice president of leadership development at Au Bon Pain, UNO Restaurants and Metromedia Restaurant Group. Also, effective May 31, Rick Crossland, vice president of culinary development, will retire after five years in this role. Abdiel Aleman, current senior director of culinary development for Ruth’s Chris, will assume the title, role and responsibilities upon Crossland’s departure. In Aleman’s more than 21 years with Ruth’s, he has worked as a regional and executive chef for various locations around the globe.
UniCarriers Americas (UCA), Marengo, Ill.
James J. Radous III was appointed president, effective Jan. 22, and was named corporate officer of global UniCarriers Corp. in Tokyo, Japan. During his first week of office, Radous appointed Tom Prusinski as senior vice president and CFO, responsible for overseeing UCA’s retail operations and merger and acquisition activities, and Eric Victor as senior vice president of strategic management and business operations, responsible for strategy execution and aligning operations across all units and functions at the enterprise level and P&L responsibilities for UCA’s Brazil operations, UniCarriers South America (UCSA). Prusinski brings more than 25 years of experience, having previously served as the global controller for SPX Hydraulic Technologies, corporate finance director at SIRVA, controller at Textron Fastening Systems, finance and treasury director at Monsanto, corporate finance director at Duplex Products and accounting manager at Babcock & Wilcox. Prior to joining UCA, Victor served as managing principal for Victor Consulting, LLC for 12 years. He also held positions of increasing authority at General Electric, PricewaterhouseCoopers Consulting, Siemens and J.M. Huber. Prior to his business career, he served 10 years as a flight officer in the U.S. Navy and has held legislative and political aid roles in Texas.
Marlen International, Inc., Riverside, Mo.
Ashley Collins joined the Solution Center applications team as a food and meat scientist. A 2014 Meat Industry Suppliers’ Association (MISA) scholarship recipient, Collins will be responsible for providing product and process solutions support to food and meat processors sourcing Marlen and Carruthers food processing equipment. Collins most recently served as graduate research assistant at Kansas State University, and fulfilled internships at two industry-leading food processors, both with a focus on processing and packaging of processed meats.
Baumer USA, Southington, Conn.
Christopher Gostebski was selected as the company’s new controller. Gostebski comes from Stanley Black & Decker, as well as United Technologies, Pratt & Whitney division, where he held various positions in accounting, finance, analysis and supply chain management.
SmartDrive Systems, San Diego, Calif.
Veteran safety, security, compliance and analytics expert Don Osterberg joined the board of advisors. A recognized thought leader in the commercial transportation industry, Osterberg's strategic perspective will contribute to SmartDrive's transportation intelligence program. Areas of focus include extending recent company innovations such as severe swerves and U-turn triggers, as well as new ways to leverage the data collected from active safety systems to create additional values for fleets. In addition, Osterberg will be directly involved in the formation of new solution initiatives and strategies related to predictive analytics, intelligent algorithm development and industry-focused management metrics. Osterberg formerly served as senior vice president of safety, security and driver training for Schneider.
The Greenbrier Cos., Inc., Lake Oswego, Ore.
The company’s chief financial officer, Mark Rittenbaum, was promoted to the newly created position of executive vice president, commercial, leasing and finance, where he will shift his primary focus to commercial activities, with particular emphasis on new railcar sales, leasing and integration/enhancement of customer service design. Rittenbaum will also chair a newly created executive committee, responsible for helping to frame policy over a wide range of business, administrative, financial and strategic areas, as well as streamlining service design and achieving service and cost synergies across the company. Meanwhile, Lorie Tekorius was promoted to senior vice president, CFO and treasurer. Tekorius has been with Greenbrier for over 20 years in various financial capacities, most recently as senior vice president and treasurer, a position she has held since 2012.
Fred Boehler, formerly the company’s president and COO, was appointed president and CEO, effective immediately. Boehler has been successful in ensuring the continuity of Americold’s strategies for growing the business and developing innovative, customer-centric temperature-controlled supply chain solutions. Prior to joining Americold, he served as senior vice president of supply chain with SUPERVALU, Inc., and was senior vice president of logistics and purchasing at Borders Group, Inc.